In Foundation News:
Educate. Motivate. Innovate.
2018 Conference for Academics
May 11, 2018
This month, accounting instructors and academic leaders met in Red Deer for the ninth annual Conference for Academics, “Educate. Motivate. Innovate.” This conference provides educators from across Alberta with the opportunity to network with one another and attend sessions relevant to their career, accounting and business education, and the profession.
The conference has truly become a cornerstone of Foundation events, and one that Alberta instructors anticipate with excitement every year. This year was no different with a star-studded lineup of speakers!
The Thursday evening kicked-off with a never-done-before interactive workshop on Innovation in Teaching led by Dr. Sherif Elbarrad. The feedback from all that attended was overwhelmingly positive; requesting a similar workshop next year. It was a fantastic way to get educators interacting and engaged with the material.
The day-long conference on Friday had the same high-caliber of speakers. Sandy Hilton and Gordon Beal both spoke from CPA Canada on the topics of the evolution of accounting and the future of the professional education program (PEP). Linda Mezon, the Chair of the Accounting Standards Board, gave a fantastic update on standards, and Darrin Ambrose from the University of Calgary did an interesting presentation on the benefits of experiential learning. Chris Sprysak from the University of Alberta spoke to litigating tax trends and the impact this will have on the accounting profession before we wrapped up with a panel discussion. The panel was composed of Teaching Prize Award recipients for 2017, who imparted some knowledge, their teaching techniques, and how they deal with “distracted learning” in the classroom.
The CPA Education Foundation is proud to host this event every year and we have already begun planning our 10th annual Conference for Academics for next year! It is sure to be bigger and better than ever.
High Stakes, High Rewards
CPA Education Foundation 10th Annual Business Challenge Case Competition
March 19, 2018
Imagine…with a racing heart, and sweaty palms, you are seated in a room with three familiar faces. You are given a package containing an itemized list of supplies and one computer. You have been stripped of all personal belongings except the clothes on your back and have no access to the internet or the outside world. You have been given a mission that you have six short hours to complete with only the resources in front of you.
Although some students described this process as reminiscent of The Hunger Games telling each other, “may the odds forever be in your favour” as they entered the lock-down rooms, this is what students experience as their six hour lock-down begins at the CPA Education Foundation Business Challenge Case Competition. The students who attend the Business Challenge every year are true competitors, the best and the brightest, and the students at the 10th annual Business Challenge were no different.
This month, students came from eight different post-secondary institutions from across the province, to compete for first, second, and third prize, which are $10,000, $5,000, and $2,000 respectively. These monetary prizes also come with obvious bragging rights and prestige in creating recognition for their respective schools. As was done last year, students were given a challenge from a real company and were required to solve a real business problem during their six hour lock-down period. They were then required to present their innovative ideas and business solution to a panel of Judges. Most student teams prepare for months leading up to the three-day competition.
After two rounds of presentations, the preliminary round and the final round, competitors made their way to the awards luncheon where the winners were announced. The tension was almost palpable as CPA Education Foundation board member, Michael Burnyeat CPA, CA, had the pleasure of announcing the winning teams. First place went to the University of Lethbridge, second place to the University of Calgary, and third place to SAIT Polytechnic, with an honourable mention going to NAIT JR Shaw School of Business. The students were all smiles as they accepted their oversized cheques.
Business challenges such as this one are so important for developing and fostering the next generation of business leaders. Providing students with the opportunity to develop solutions to real-life business problems is invaluable in helping them build their future skills. The CPA Education Foundation is proud of all the competitors who made the 10th annual Business Challenge Case Competition a roaring success. Until next year!
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