Ideas with Impact
UNB Faculty of Management

Finance wizards in the making bring home top prize for UNB

Author: Faculty of Management

Posted on May 1, 2024

Category: Students , Alumni , Faculty

In the heat of competition, the combination of financial savvy, teamwork, and communication skills, helped a team of Student Investment Fund (SIF) students claim victory in the prestigious 2024 CFA Institute Research Challenge. Guided by mentors Don Wishart (then Director of UNB’s Centre for Financial Studies) and Dr. Joseph DeCoste (SIF instructor with the faculty of management), this team of five senior students – Adebukanla Fabamwo, Urvashi Sharma, Alex Sturge, Patrick Doyle and Ryan Hebert – showcased superior skills in financial analysis and valuation.

Now in its 25th year, the SIF course at UNB is about hands-on experience. Managing a portfolio now worth over $14 million, students dive into the intricacies of investment, following the CFA recommended study path for the Level One exam. Their triumph in the CFA Institute Research Challenge, a global arena for testing equity research, investment report writing, and presentation skills, underscores the practical acumen honed through this program. It also enables students to test many of the skills they will need when they enter the work force.

In their winning report, "TOYing Around in Spin Master’s Sandbox," the SIF team presented a compelling BUY recommendation for the Canadian-based Spin Master Corp (TSX:TOY), a global entertainment and toy company that caters to children and parents worldwide. Dr. DeCoste commended the team's remarkable skill, dedication, and teamwork, evident in their victory against formidable opponents from Dalhousie University, St. Francis Xavier University, Saint Mary's University and Memorial University.

For fourth-year BBA student Fabamwo, the competition was both challenging and rewarding, offering invaluable exposure to industry professionals and mentors. As he prepares to embark on his career journey as a CPA Candidate with Irving Oil, Fabamwo acknowledges how this experience has primed him for success in the investments field, providing insights into the role of a research analyst even before stepping into the industry.

Sharma echoes similar sentiments, emphasizing how the challenge not only honed her analytical skills but also fostered crucial attributes like teamwork, communication, and critical thinking – essential for the Audit Associate position she is starting with PWC in Halifax, NS, when she graduates in May.

Participating in the CFA Research Challenge brings a boost of confidence to all four students as they prepare to launch their careers. Sturge just accepted a position as Investment Associate with Louisbourg Investments and Doyle will be joining CIBC as a Commercial Banker.

The triumph of the SIF team is a testament to UNB’s commitment to fostering real-world readiness among its students. As these new graduates prepare to embark on their professional journeys, they carry with them the invaluable lessons learned through rigorous academic training and practical experience, poised to make meaningful contributions to the finance industry and beyond.

Photo: Mentors and members of the winning team are (left to right) Don Wishart (then Director, Centre for Financial Studies and President of Seamark Asset Management), Adebukanla Abidemi Fabamwo, Urvashi Sharma, Patrick Liam Doyle, Ryan Robert Hebert, Alex Nicholas Sturge and Dr. Joseph DeCoste (SIF instructor and UNB management finance professor).

Learn more about the Student Investment Fund and the Centre for Financial Studies.

Media contact: Liz Lemon-Mitchell.