Two weekends ago I ventured to Novotel Dubai to check out the IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants) Middle East event where five shortlisted Student Case Study Competition teams showcased their knowledge in front of a panel of industry experts .
The annual event, organized by IMA Middle East and sponsored this year by Morgan International and Wiley, provides a platform for students to interpret, analyze and evaluate a management accounting problem.
The mood was vibrant with young enthusiastic students ready to impress the judges. Each finalist team was tasked to develop a solution, present it to an audience and receive recognition for their efforts based on the effectiveness of the solution.
The five finalist teams were from the New York University (Abu Dhabi), Middlesex University (Dubai), Jubail University College (KSA), Institute of Management Accountants (Dubai) and Bahrain Polytechnic (Bahrain).
“It’s great to see that the number of participants in this competition grows each year. The level of competency shown by students reflects the quality of education the youth are receiving in our field. We are delighted to be part of their professional growth,” said Hanady Khalife, Director of Operations, IMA Middle East/Africa region. “Nurturing young talent has been an integral part of our plan for growth initiatives amongst the University students. The talent we have witnessed during this competition is commendable and we hope more students use the platforms IMA provides to nurture their craft in accounting.”
The members of the judging panel included Mr. Loutfi K. Echhade CMA, CFM, CPA, CFF, CIA, CCSA, CFSA, CISA, Hadeel Nassar CMA, CIA, and MA (AUS) and Ahmed Farouq, CMA, CIA, CPA, the financial Controller of Wilo Middle East FZE, German Pump Manufacturer.
The judges used multiple criteria in evaluating the presentations, including technical content, presentation skills, case analysis style, presentation organization, and strength of recommendations and conclusions based on Case requirements. Given the high level of talent and eloquence of the students, the judging process was intense but winners were selected based on overall excellence.
The first place winner, Middlesex University (Dubai) received USD $3,000 and the second place winner, Jubail University College (KSA), received USD $2,000. All finalists received a Certificate of Achievement. The first and second place winners received an engraved plaque with their school’s name, and each team member’s name in addition to the monetary award.
The students enjoyed the experience and expressed that the competition gave them a feel of a real work experience and made them aware about taking all variables into consideration when providing information to management for decision making.
IMA Middle East collaborates regularly with universities to assist students and faculty grow their accounting knowledge and provides platforms that create awareness on the latest resources and trends available to make their professional work competitive among peers.