AU students take second place at the CMA/CGA Alberta Board Governance Case Competition

Business students from Athabasca University won second place at the Certified Management Accountants (CMA) and Certified General Accountants (CGA) Alberta Board Governance Case Competition March 13 – 15 in Calgary.

Of the 13 teams competing, the top three teams entered the final round. First place and a $10,000 cheque went to a team from the University of Lethbridge. The team from the University of Alberta won the $2,000 third place prize.

The second- place team and sharing the $5000 cheque are students Adam Chappell, Charles Gallucci, Aaron Jones and Sonja Vandermeer.  Leading the team was  Dr. Aris Solomon,  Associate Professor of Accounting.

The students analyzed a governance case, based on a fictitious not-for-profit company, and presented their recommendations to a judging panel of esteemed Alberta business leaders, including: Kris Matthews, FCMA, President, Matthews Group LLP; Darrell Nimchuk, CMA, Consultant; Alison Geskin, Director of Development & Communication, Alberta Ballet; Jerry Richardson, FCMA, Partner, Ethier Associates; Kara Claypool, CMA, COO & CEO, Vintage Group; Blake Bartlett, CMA, Director, Forecasting, Alberta Health Services; Don Burwash, FCMA, Director of Finance, Signalta Resources Limited; Rita Sly, CMA, Director, ATB Financial; Christine McGinley, Consultant.

The students had six hours to develop their case and create a presentation to deliver to the judging panel.

“I’m always amazed at the quality of the presentations these students are able to achieve in only six hours, and this year was no exception,” says Joan Bedard, CMA (Hon.), Director, Customer Relations and Events, CMA Alberta. “Overall the competition was a success, the judges were thoroughly impressed and each team member gained comprehensive practical experience that they can use in their careers.”

The competition also included a Board Governance 101 workshop lead by Dr. Chris Bart, founder, principal and lead professor of The Directors College and a leading board governance expert. Dr. Bart’s presentation focused on governance fundamentals and the importance of maintaining a positive relationship between management and a board of directors.  Summing up his experience, Charles Gallucci said, “It is my opinion that AU’s continued success at this event continues to raise the profile of the University, especially the business program.  Last year it was apparently a surprise that AU did well.  This year it was expected, and once again we showed that the online model of the University works just as well as the brick and mortar system.   This was an outstanding experience for me personally.  One which cannot be measured in monetary terms, as there is no way to buy an experience like this.  There is no other way to replicate this type of event except to participate.”

For more information about the CMA Alberta Board Governance Competition, visit www.cma-alberta.com/case.

About CMA Alberta
As an integral partner of CMA Canada, CMA Alberta is the self-governing professional organization responsible for the training, accreditation and continuing professional development of CMAs in Alberta. Of CMA Canada’s 50,000 members across Canada and around the world, more than 6,800 CMAs are accredited in Alberta.

About CGA Alberta
CGA Alberta is the governing and regulatory body responsible for the training, certification and promotion of Alberta’s nearly 9,000 CGAs and CGA students.

In October 2012, CGA Alberta and CMA Alberta announced the unification of the two organizations as part of a national effort to create a single Canadian accounting profession. You can learn more about the national unifications efforts at www.cpacanada.ca and provincially at www.albertaaccountants.org.