Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto

Main Content

Processing. Please wait.
First Semester Reflection and Takeaways - Ahsan, MFRM Class of 2021

The MFRM program strives to shape students into well-rounded individuals who are qualified to tackle real-world scenarios through holistic problem-solving.

The first month of the program provided an opportunity for relationship building alongside personal and career development that proved to be beneficial throughout the semester that followed.

Despite the world of online learning, there were many opportunities for students to showcase their ingenuity.

Students found themselves participating in internal and external competitions to implement their newly acquired skills. Competitions were varied by topic - some examples of these were the TD Credit Risk Challenge hosted by TD Securities, and the McGill International Portfolio Competition (MIPC). Credit Risk will be a topic focused on in our second semester, but many students took this experience as a way to take learning into their own hands to further their educational experience outside of the classroom. I, along with Shang Wu (another MFRM ambassador), took the opportunity to participate in the competition hosted by McGill University and found ourselves as semi-finalists.

This opportunity challenged our knowledge and provided us with experiential learning in the field of portfolio management and portfolio construction.

We learned to utilize a wide-range of our skills to succeed in this competition and realized the importance of teamwork and team-building that is necessary to thrive in the MFRM program.

Teamwork has played an integral role in knowledge sharing and holistic learning.

After completing semester one of the MFRM program, I have learned that teamwork is a necessary component to success as a student. The program is largely based on group work and project-based learning that requires each student to hone-in on their expertise and knowledge while working together to get the job done.

This learning environment is simulated by the working world, where individuals work together using their accrued acumen to achieve common goals and deliverables. As outlined by Miranda in the earlier January blog post, coding knowledge is essential to a successful term – knowledge sharing was a fundamental component of learning in this department and gave us the ability to leverage the knowledge of our classmates who had expertise in this area.

A qualitative and quantitative approach to risk management…

As much as quantitative skills are emphasized through the program, qualitative learning is also a necessity for comprehensive problem-solving. Operational Risk taught by Professor Anthony Peccia, CRO of Citibank Canada, was imperative to our qualitative skill development. Outside of the necessary learning objectives of this class, Prof. Peccia taught us to a structured approach to problem-solving through the MECE (Mutually Exclusive and Comprehensively Exhaustive) structures and utilization of Elevator Pitch Statements. This class also taught us “learning by doing” which provided students the opportunity to be experts on topics and teach their peers.

After one semester of learning, our class is equipped to tackle the Risk Management Project with confidence in our abilities to produce meaningful results for our project sponsors.

The skills we have learned and the knowledge we have accrued are being applied across diverse industries such as consulting, pension funds, big banks, and Fintech start-ups. The practical knowledge we will now gain from our projects will benefit our long-term career ambitions. I am excited to see what challenges lay ahead in our next semester in terms of personal, professional, and academic growth.

The Master of Financial Risk Management is a full-time program designed to prepare ambitious young professionals for careers in risk management and finance. 

© Rotman School of ManagementThe Rotman School of Management is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AASCB)