By Amanda Groulx
Six business management students entered Camelot on Saturday, as they participated in The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario’s CA$H competition.
Lisa Kim, Ravind Nanubhai, Thomas Yeung, Adnan Sidi, Lennie Lejasisaks, and Asma Shahsamand formed the two teams representing Ryerson at this event.
Thirty-three teams from 20 Ontario universities were invited to compete at the Toronto ICAO building on Bloor Street. There, they played a King Arthur-themed game in hopes of winning this year’s grand prize of $3,000, plus an extra $1,000 for their school’s accounting club.
Three students from the University of Toronto at Scarborough took home the top prize. Ryerson’s teams didn’t place in the top six, the only ranked positions. Each team had to represent a historical village in Camelot during the role-playing games.
The groups were also given a set amount of currency, as well as information and resources which they could buy, sell or trade. Teams scored points based on the total currency they acquired, as well as their honesty and integrity in doing so.
“The analogy that we can tie back into the end is that as an accountant, as a professional, as a manager, you often get the type A personalities,” said Roger Joseph, event facilitator for Eagle’s Flight, the company hired by the ICAO to run the event.
While these people are focused on getting good results, they’re not very concerned with building relationships. “So the key lesson they will learn from this as they progress, is that … to be truly professional, to get to partner during your career, it’s about achieving results and building relationships,” he said.
For a game played by future accountants, very few numbers were involved. “It’s a lot different than I expected,” said first-year busines student Lennie Lejasisaks, after completing the event.
“I was expecting more teamwork, when actually there was a lot of dealing with different teams.”
Teammate Thomas Yeung, who participated in the competition last year, was less surprised by the event. He said he knew they wouldn’t be tested on technical skills learned in class.
“It would be skills we learned more throughout our lives,” he said.
Such a unique game was exactly what the ICAO was looking for. “We wanted something that was fun for them to keep them connected to the accounting profession,” said Brian Leader, ICAO vice-president of learning.
“We learned to trust each other,” said Yeung, “and how to use ethics in real life.”