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My experience at NHBC!

Hi everyone! My name is Thamira Seralathan and I am a grade 10 student at Lester B. Pearson CI. Today I had the pleasure of attending the National High School Business Conference. Here are my thoughts highlighting what I learned about from the keynotes, workshops, to the CPA challenge itself.

Firstly, I'd like to talk about the opening keynote speaker we had, Mark Grenon who is a forensics accountant. I was very intrigued by his keynote because I didn't know what forensics accounting was, or what the jobs like. His presentation, and the stories he shared were very informative, and since some of them were real-life cases I found it very interesting! Not to mention that his presentation did help with the case study later on!

We had two workshops one with Illuminate and one with CPA Ontario; I would like to talk about a few things I learned from the Illuminate workshop about mental fitness. Throughout the whole workshop, I was very engaged in the conversation about sage and saboteur, and how we can work out our brain muscles; the 3 core muscles. The workshop taught me more about my mental fitness, and how I can improve my mental health from the negative thoughts called saboteurs.

For the CPA Challenge we had 80 minutes to find out "who did it?" It was a case study to find out who stole the missing money from a company. The challenge was a cool experience, as my team was a little stressed due to the time limit; however, we did manage to come up with a solution on who we believed were the suspects. The case study was very interesting to me because it was something forensics accountants would do, and before this conference, I barely knew what forensics accounting was, so it was a big accomplishment to complete the case study even if we didn't win the top 3.

Lastly, I'd like to mention the Illuminate challenge which we had to complete as a team before the conference day. My team and I had chosen to do the Illuminate x World challenge where we made a promotional video about the Illuminate Leadership Academy. Fortunately, we won second place in the challenge which was exciting as my team and I worked very hard!

Overall I had a wonderful experience at the NHBC 2021, and learned many things, which I've only mentioned a few up above! I believe the things I've taken away from this conference will most definitely help me in my career in whichever path I decide to take because I learned about how I could build on myself, my career in business, and how I can be more involved with CPA in the future.

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