Bissett Insider

Bissett students place second in CPA Business Challenge

The CPA Business Challenge case competition was held on Friday, March 7, 2020, in Calgary.

A total of 15 teams representing the University of Calgary, University of Lethbridge, University of Alberta, SAIT, NAIT, MacEwan University, Athabasca University and of course, our two Bissett teams from Mount Royal University participated in this prestigious case competition sponsored by the CPA Education Foundation (CPAEF).

This year, one of our two teams from the Bissett School of Business was placed second overall, which comes with a cash prize of $5,000. An outstanding achievement indeed! Our team that was placed second overall was comprised of the following four students:

Ben Barfuss
Martin Keskin
Chantelle Linares
Linda Tran

The students presented their case with poise and in a very organized fashion. Their analysis of the case was solid and in-depth. The team members confidently answered all questions from the judges. They were fantastic, and without a doubt, the team is worthy of this recognition.

The success of our students is not only indicative of their talent, hard work, and professionalism but also of the rigor of our accounting program and mentorship by our dedicated professors who continue to educate students to strive to attain excellence. (This is the second year in a row that a Bissett team has placed high in this prestigious competition!) Special thanks to our three Accounting faculty, including Rafik Kurji, Simon Magennis and, Osama El-Temtamy, for their hard work, coaching, guidance, and mentorship.

The Bissett School of Business sincerely thanks CPAEF for their generous support over the many years. Thanks to all and congratulations!

Bissett students from Social Innovation and Accounting place third in Alberta Not-for-Profit Association case competition

Bissett students, Mia Baines, Jan Santiago (Accounting Majors) and Kolten Nelson and Xander Jensen (Social Innovation program) placed third in the Alberta Not-for-Profit Association (ANPA) case competition at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. The students, who had been preparing for the competition since late November 2019, were mentored by Catherine Pearl PhD, (Social Innovation) and Simon Magennis, BSc, CPA, (Accounting). The Bissett faculty mentors were contacted by the organizers based on previous involvement in student case competitions. This was the first time that Bissett participated in the ANPA case competition.

L to R: Catherine Pearl (faculty, MRU); Alexander Jensen (student, MRU); Simon Magennis (faculty, MRU); Jan Santiago (student, MRU); Mia Bains (student, MRU); Kolten Nelson (student, MRU); Bob Wyatt (CEO, Muttart Foundation)



The competition took place from Wednesday, February 26 to Sunday, March 1 and involved students from eight universities (seven Canadian, and one from Indiana, U.S.) spending 24 hours analyzing and preparing solutions to a live business problem relating to a local Not-for-Profit organization. They presented their solutions firstly in a preliminary round and then a four-team final, to a judging panel made up of representatives from the not-for-profit organization, local business, University of Alberta, and the competition sponsor, the Muttart Foundation.

The ANPA has been organizing the not-for-profit business case competition since 2013. Canadian and international universities participate each year. This year’s finalists and prizewinners were from:  1. University of Alberta, 2. McMaster University, 3. Mount Royal University, and 4. Laurentian University. Our team received $2,000 to donate to the charity of their choice.

Congratulations to the Bissett team on their win and a special thank you to the faculty mentors, Simon and Catherine for their commitment and service to our Bissett students!


2020 BASS managerial case competition a success

On January 24th, the Bissett Accounting Student Society (BASS) held their annual managerial case competition on campus.
The winners of the competition were as follows:
  • 1st- Linda Tran & Sohaib Abbas
  • 2nd- David Koter & Garret McMullen
  • 3rd- Mezha Sikandar & Aaesha Azhar
1 ST. Place BASS Competition
2nd Place BASS Competition 2020
3rd Place BASS Competition
Congratulations to all the winners and all student participants. Special thank you’s are extended to the BASS executive, the volunteers and  the  judges: Kate Schiller from KPMG, Amy McHarg from Pembina, Dave MacPherson from Bissett School of Business, Kelvin Ng from PwC.

Bissett professor Nicole Edge has paper accepted at the Qualitative Accounting Research Symposium

Bissett school of Business would like to congratulate  Assistant Professor, Nicole Edge for having her paper titled: “The Goffman Gospel According to Accounting: Maintaining Business Beliefs” accepted for the Qualitative Accounting Research Symposium sponsored by the Canadian Academic Accounting Association.

The Symposium, taking place November 28 – 29, at the University of Guelph, “brings together researchers and accounting faculty who share an interest in qualitative accounting research from diverse methodological and theoretical perspectives”.

Bissett Case club team wins prestigious CPA Business Challenge Competition!

Congratulations to our Bissett case club team for their incredible win in the CPA Business Challenge Case Competition this past March. Competing teams were from universities across the province including the University of Calgary, University of Alberta, University of Lethbridge, MacEwan University, SAIT, NAIT and Athabasca University.

The winning team, comprised of Bissett students Mia Bains, Lyra Mae Cosare, Lucas Mardones and Katherine Martens,  won the first place cash prize of $10,000 which is wholly sponsored by the Chartered Professional Accountants Education Foundation (CPAEF).

The judges’s comments referenced the winning teams “ability to organize and articulate their analysis in a poised, confident and competent manner.”

The second Bissett team of Shane Cuckow, Dea Devolli, Mishal Ira Ordonez and Jan Santiago also showed well with a strong presentation, narrowly missing qualifying for the final presentation round.

The success of our students is not only indicative of their talent and hard work but also of the accounting program and mentor-ship of our dedicated professors, that continues to produce students of high caliber.

A special thanks to the faculty for their continued support and guidance to the teams through the Accounting Case Club. They include Nicole Edge, Assistant Professor, Accounting and Finance; Rafik Kurji, Associate Professor, Accounting and Finance, and Simon Magennis, Associate Professor, Accounting and Finance.

Thanks to all and congratulations!

Bissett Accounting Students Society Fall Financial Accounting Case Competition

The Bissett Accounting Students Society held their Fall financial accounting case competition this past October. Nine teams, comprised of two students each competed for prize money sponsored by the CPA Education Foundation.

Congratulations to the following winners:

1st: Derek Beavan and Sultan Sahota

2nd: Dillion Hyde and Carl Florence

3rd: Mehza Sikandar and Kisanet Berhane

Special thanks to judges Adrian Surban CPA (Atco), Jennifer Cheung CPA (CP Rail, and Shiraz Kurji CPA (Bissett Associate Professor in Accounting).

Also thank you to the CPA Education Foundation for their continued support .

BASS students host successful case competition

Congratulations to the Bissett Accounting Students’ Society, participants and winners for another successful case competition:

“Bissett Accounting Students Society (BASS) was fortunate to host a financial case competition on Friday November 18th. The day started off with six teams of two students each. With the whole morning to prepare a case, students were anxious to present to the judges. This years judges included Paula Overguard from Arc Resources, Andrew Beingessner from Crescent Point Energy, Scott Bauman from Collins Barrow, Brent Hall from BDO and Simon Magennis, from Mount Royal University.

The contestants and professionals had the opportunity to network over Spolumbos lunch. In the afternoon, each team gave a 10-minute presentation showcasing their accounting acumen to the judges. After deliberation the judges announced the top three teams:

1st Place to Timothy Lipp and Sean Sarjeant
2nd Place to Steven Reed and Brendon Layton
3rd Place to Braden Smith and Miles Myers


Thanks to CPA Alberta’s generous support, $2,000 was distributed to the top three teams with the top team taking home $500 each. BASS is extremely thankful for all the support CPA Alberta gives us throughout the year. By continuously sponsoring us, BASS is able to not only host events such as the case competition, but also provide scholarships to students with financial need. Thank you CPA Alberta for all your support!


Additionally, a special thank you to all our judges for whom this event would not have succeeded without. We are excited for the future and hope you return as judges again!”

McKenzie Schoenthal 

Vice President

Bissett Accounting Students’ Society 

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Bissett School of Business BASS Students host 13th Annual Golf Tournament

The 13th annual BASS golf tournament was held Friday September 30, 2016 at River Spirit Golf Club.  Thank you to the 36 professional accountants and 36 accounting students who made the tournament a success.

The annual tournament is designed so accounting students can spend a day networking with accounting professionals and learn more about working as a professional accountant.  BASS executive and members have designed the tournament to provide fun and friendly competition for players of all levels.

The tournament itself was sponsored by the Chartered Professional Accountants (CPA) of Alberta, the professional organization representing more than 28,000 CPAs across the province.  Representing CPA Alberta and speaking at the tournament breakfast was Farah Albert CPA, CA, CPA (IL, USA).  Sarah serves as Director Business Development at CPA Alberta.  Sarah spoke to recent and future CPA developments relating to articling pathways into the profession.  Her updates on the CPA qualifying experience requirements were well received by both students and professional accountants.  The audience was very attentive since half of Alberta articling students follow the pre-approved program route, with the other half following the experience verification route.

Gordon Turtle, Senior Vice-President, Communications at CPA Alberta spoke to tournament participants and guests at dinner.  Gordon provided a brief overview of the current priorities of CPA Alberta within the context of the evolution of the CPA designation in Alberta.  Reminding attendees that the accounting profession in Alberta was unified on July 1, 2015 Gordon stressed that any CPA candidate qualifying as a CPA after that date must brand themselves with the CPA designation following their name.  Following unification, brand value from the each of the CA, CMA and CGA designations is transferred to the CPA by members appending their relative legacy designation in the style of “CPA, CA”, “CPA, CGA”, or “CPA, CMA” after their name.  Gordon also stressed the importance of professional ethics as practiced by CPA Alberta members.  In order for CPA Alberta to continue as a self-regulated profession serving the public, maintaining high ethical standards within the profession is critical.

Many thanks to the following professional accounting organizations who supported our students in this tournament by providing professional accountant golfers and acting as hole sponsors:

  • CPA Alberta*
  • Critical Mass**
  • BDO
  • Crescent Point Energy**
  • EY
  • PCL Construction
  • Deloitte
  • Collins Barrow
  • ARC Resources**
  • KPMG
  • Phillips 66
  • MNP
  • Western Energy Services**
  • Gregory Harriman & Associates LLP
  • JMH & Co.
  • CPA Alberta
  • Mount Royal University

*Event sponsor,  **Hole sponsor


Bissett School of Business students take 1st Place in the 2016 CPA Board Governance Case Competition

The 2016 CPA Board Governance Case Competition was held on March 17-18 at Hotel Arts in Calgary.   This competition is an annual event, organized and hosted by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Alberta, originally initiated by CMA Alberta.  In this competition students are given a case to analyze.  The case covers issues in accounting, board governance, and ethics. The case is kept secret until it is handed to the teams at the competition.  Teams are then given six hours to analyze the case and present their analysis, recommending solutions to a judging panel of business leaders. Only four teams are selected to advance to the final round and prizes are awarded to the top three teams.

A total of thirteen teams representing all the universities and post-secondary institutions in Alberta participated in this year’s competition, vying for the top prize of $10,000.00.  The Bissett School of Business from Mount Royal University had two teams participating.

Both teams from Mount Royal performed very well at this year’s competition. In particular, out of the thirteen teams that entered the competition, one of the Bissett teams not only made it to the final round, but finished first overall! This is a tremendous accomplishment!  The participants work under extreme pressure to come up with their solution to the case to present to the panel of judges.  They also have to be very strong technically in their accounting knowledge and other subject matter.  Another critical component for the winning team was their strong presentation skills.

The students from the winning Bissett team were:

  • Ross Graham
  • Melissa Kinzner
  • Shaelynn (Shae) Prefontaine
  • Corey Reinhardt
  • Peter Serafini

The following faculty coached the Bissett teams:

  • Rafik Kurji
  • Shiraz Kurji
  • Simon Magennis

A lunch has been organized on Friday April 8 at 12:30 pm in room EB2027 to celebrate our teams from Mount Royal.  The Dean, Associate Dean, and all Accounting faculty will be in attendance to celebrate the success of the students who participated in the 2016 CPA Board Governance Case Competition.

On behalf of the Bissett School of Business we would like to congratulate the winners on a job well done! Congratulations also goes out to the other participants. Thank you to our dedicated faculty members for providing coaching and mentoring to our students!

Simon Magennis, Assistant Professor, Bissett School of Business, winner of CAEF Teaching Award

The Bissett School of Business  would like to congratulate our own Simon Magennis, Associate Professor, Accounting and Finance, for being nominated for this year’s CAEF Teaching Award (Chartered Accountant Education Foundation).

This reward selection process was spearheaded by Bissett Accounting Student’s Association (BASS). As in prior year’s, the selection process was based on the following criteria:

◘ Innovative improvements in course content, paper or web-based course materials,    cases or project work, or other significant course development.

◘Consistently superior performance and command of the subject matter.

◘ Attention to students’ intellectual development, interest and enthusiasm for learning.

◘ Presentation of course content and examinations at an appropriate level of rigor.

◘ Excellent course planning, organization, communication or administration.

In their selection of Simon Magennis as this year’s nominee, the selection committee found that Simon:

“clearly went above and beyond, building rapport and trust with students enough for them to share their struggles and allow Simon to help them in and outside of the classroom. Many respondents cited Simon’s ability to keep the classroom alive, to utilize real-world examples, and his availability outside of classroom or even regular office hours. However, what truly set Simon apart were a few responses that cited his ability to build rapport and trust with students to help them discover learning disabilities and truly impact their learning development. He was able to aid in these students in identifying a disability, getting tested for it, and accessing resources in order to truly excel. He didn’t stop there, but continued to challenge these students in a kind and caring way; so much that one claimed to have raised their grades from a C+ average to being on the Dean’s Honor Role. Another was subsequently encouraged by Simon to participate in a BASS Case Competition and actually won first place. Other students said that Simon would genuinely take interest in their learning and treat them like people, sharing invaluable tips for general learning and tips specific to accounting.”

Simon will be presented with the CAEF Teaching Award  at this year’s CPA Alberta Conference for Academics to be held at the Holiday Inn, Red Deer, AB. on May 6, 2016.

Congratulations Simon!