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Who Did It?: Experience through Illuminate 2021

Updated: May 30, 2021

Hi everyone! My name is Jessica and I am a Grade 11 student at Glenforest. Today, I had the pleasure to attend the National High School Business Conference. Here are my thoughts highlighting what I learned about various topics, including leadership and entrepreneurship.


I learned that there is much more the real world can offer in terms of jobs and other work opportunities. The finance and entrepreneurship advice from the workshops gave me insight into what could be beneficial for my future, especially if I choose the business path. I especially enjoyed the presentation on the CPA opportunities. To begin with, I was not entirely certain about the business world, but I learned that there is much more to it than just simple financial calculations; networking and other soft skills play important roles.


To begin with, Mark Grenon, a forensics accountant, told us his compelling story about his job that got me interested in forensic accounting. It really made me realize the importance of audits and fraud prevention. His talk also gave some helpful tips when looking into our case study.

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I learned a bit more about accounting from Jodi's workshop on CPA Ontario, the first workshop gave a general glance at how enrolling in the CPA program would be beneficial for standing out in a resume. She mentioned some of the prerequisites for going into the business fields and the average compensation of a CPA; really helpful when deciding if I wanted to go down the business accounting pathway.

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The second workshop gave insight into mental fitness and a different perspective on mental health. I learned about "sages" and "saboteurs" that can affect one's attitude and decision-making. I never really realized these as "core muscles", but they were informative on why I might feel certain emotions.

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As for the "Who Did It" CPA case, challenge, it was interesting as I did not expect a case scenario related to forensic accounting. It allowed me to think outside the box to figure out a solution. Matching the receipts with the expense & travel logs and having conversations with my teammates was interactive and exciting.


In the end, I really enjoyed my experience with this conference, and I look forward to learning much more with Illuminate.