In this post we hear from Javier Hernandez, Director Market Risk at RBC. Javier and RBC have supported the Rotman Master of Financial Risk Management program by providing Risk Management Project placements, and have also hired MFRM graduates.
We learn why Javier believes MFRM graduates are well placed to make and impact in the world of risk management.
Hi Javier, what is your involvement with the MFRM program?
I was one of the hiring managers for the Risk Management Project, and thanks to the sponsorship of Global Risk Management (GRM) Executives at RBC I hired two grad students to work for nine weeks in the Project. After graduation, one of the students was hired full time by GRM at RBC.
Why are programs like the Master of Financial Risk Management important?
Over the past two decades, capital markets have gained in complexity and velocity; as a result, risk management has become critical for financial institutions as it allows organizations to communicate key information to senior management such as trading strategies, P&L analysis, stress testing results and capital impact. Given the ever-growing complexity of capital markets, specialized programs, such as the Rotman MFRM, provide students with a strong understanding of key risk concepts and also give them the technical and soft skills that will allow them to tackle complex trading strategies with confidence and expertise. Through research associated with our RBC Future Launch program, we know that work-integrated learning experiences are key to a young person’s career success.
Being able to offer work-integrated learning experience (through the Risk Management Project) to its students, helps set its graduates apart.
How do you see the Rotman MFRM program being able to fill the future needs of the risk management sector?
The Rotman MFRM has a focus on finances and risk management which provides a good balance between business knowledge and technical expertise. The program real business case, where students can actually apply their knowledge in "the real world" closes the gap between theoretical expertise and practical expertise, the latter being tremendously valued by employers.
How is technology changing the industry, and do you see Rotman graduates as having the skills to cope with this change?
Technology has been a game changer in the financial sector. FinTech companies bringing new ideas into the market, Artificial Intelligence becoming a norm to process, analyze and study large amounts of data, the emergence of new business practices like algorithmic trading, are only a few of the changes technology is bringing to the industry.
Rotman students have the tremendous benefit of having a great infrastructure supported by its Financial Innovation Lab (FinHub), as well as a top faculty recognized globally. In addition, the opportunity to work on a project that is relevant for financial institutions put them in touch with latest ideas in the business. We know how important it is to help young people prepare for a disrupted future.
What skills do you feel Rotman graduates bring to the workforce that you perhaps had not seen in other graduates/employees?
While working along Rotman graduates, three major aspects come to mind. First, the graduates demonstrated a great balance between technical and soft skills that is hard to achieve even for experienced professionals. Second, which is linked to the first point, they are able to communicate complex topics in a simple and concise way, which is extremely valuable for a risk manager, as we often work with stakeholders that do not have the same level of expertise. Finally, Rotman graduates bring diversity of thought, this is expected given the cultural diversity, the percentage of students with and without experience and the many different academic backgrounds this program attracts. As a result of this diversity, the graduates bring innovative solutions to the table and complemented each other's contributions to the project.
The Master of Financial Risk Management is a full time program designed to prepare ambitious young professionals for careers in risk management and finance.