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Events listed below are coordinated by the Arts & Science Alumni Office as well as by various Arts & Science academic units.  For a list of general U of T alumni events, please see the U of T Events Calendar.

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b2B Industry Night – Careers in Business and Finance (2019)

November 20 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Thinking about a career in business or finance? Curious as to how to plan your path forward and connect your current studies with a job after graduation? Join us on Wednesday, November 20, 2019, when alumni and students will mix and mingle for a very special b2B.

Careers in business and finance span many areas and offer a variety of career options after graduation. The skills you gain from your Arts & Science degree can be transferred into many opportunities in these fields. This networking reception will be a great opportunity to make these connections and speak with multiple alumni who graduated from the Faculty of Arts & Science and have gone on to pursue a career in business and finance, as well as with fellow U of T students who are also considering this path.



The b2B Industry Night focuses on careers in a specific industry, and offers an opportunity for students to engage with alumni who graduated from the Faculty of Arts & Science, and who are now working in various fields.

Event Objectives

  • Connect students, recent grads, and alumni who are interested in a career in a particular field.
  • Encourage conversations about how an Arts & Science education contributes to a career in the field.
  • Explore career options in order to support a successful transition after graduation.
  • Develop and expand your professional network.
  • Build awareness about the realities of a career in the industry and potential paths to get there.
  • Discover a variety of career stories.


Time Activity
5:30 pm Alumni are invited to arrive, register and mingle.

Refreshments will be provided throughout the evening

6:00 pm Students arrive and register.

Ambassadors will be on hand to introduce students to alumni

6:15 pm Opening remarks

Networking event officially begins

8:00 pm Networking event officially concludes

Event Audience

The b2B Industry Night attendees include students and recent graduates at various stages of their education and career, as well as Arts & Science alumni, including:

  • U of T Arts & Science Alumni currently working in the industry
  • Undergraduate students who are considering a career in the industry and want to learn how their studies will support them beyond graduation
  • Graduate students (MA, MSc, PhD) who are interested in exploring careers in the industry
  • Recent graduates who are looking to continue to develop their networks, professional skills and industry knowledge

Alumni Biographies

Grigory Bloch, VP PB Risk Technology, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Grigory graduated from the University of Toronto with an Hon. B.Sc in Computer Science and Economic. During his time at the University of Toronto took part in CSSU, Judo Club, Hillel and even AEPi.

Grigory started working at a Toronto based boutique software consulting company that took him to the trading floors of New York. During his 12 year stint Grigory, among other things, assisted a Fortune 40 company to establish its technology headquarters, lead the development of the world’s top foreign exchange trading platform, helped a FinTech establish itself in North America and founded an office in Raleigh, North Carolina for his consulting company.

Grigory recently returned to Toronto, where he leads Prime Brokerage Technology for Merrill Lynch Bank of America’s Equity business.

On a personal note, Grigory has lived in 4 countries and continues to travel as much as possible exploring new lands and cuisines. While Grigory is fluent in Russian, Hebrew he is passionate about education, mentorship and languages.

Neal Carley, VP Sales, STT

U of T 2001 (Management/Philosophy)
Manchester Business School 2013
Commercialized business on every continent.
Speaks many languages
Professional Foreign culture expert

Jason Cawthorn, Vice President, Sourcing Execution & Strategy, TD Bank

Jason Cawthorn is the Vice President and Head of Sourcing Execution & Strategy within the Strategic Sourcing Group. In this role he is accountable for the overall category sourcing strategy, as well as leading the operationalization of procurement requests from intake through to fulfillment for $8.5B in goods and services that TD Bank spends with third parties on an annual basis.

Prior to joining TD, Jason held procurement leadership roles at EDS, Hewlett-Packard, Agrega (ABInBev and BAT) and Ever Corporation, where he was responsible for sourcing categories across many industries and globally across over 170 countries. With over 20 years’ experience in procurement, Jason brings both expertise and thought leadership to the table.

He is also a board member of the Canadian Aboriginal & Minority Supplier Council.

Darren Chen, Account Representative, Uber Eats

Graduated from UofT in 2018 with a BCom, Finance & Economics Specialist. Currently working with Uber Eats in Sales, helping bring top restaurant partners onto the platform.

Eugene Choi, Management Consultant, Blue-Mark

Eugene is currently a management consultant at Blue-Mark, where he is a trusted advisor to senior leaders in Canada’s leading financial institutions on strategy, operating model, digital transformation initiatives, and organizational effectiveness. Blue-Mark’s clients include CIBC, RBC, TD, BMO, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, Investors Group, and more.

Eugene dropped out of high school to work in retail due to illnesses in his family, but continued to pursue his passion through founding multiple digital-first startups. A few years later, he enrolled in the University of Toronto through the Academic Bridging program, where he would pursue Philosophy and Ethics, Society, and Law. After graduating, he joined Travelers in 2013 as a Business Systems Analyst while also pursuing continuing education in project management and risk management. By 2016, Eugene was managing multi-million dollar projects for Travelers, but he recognized that he needed a business education to continue taking on more impactful opportunities. He decided to pursue his MBA part-time at the Rotman School of Management and graduated as the class valedictorian in June of 2019. His education at Rotman enabled him to shift into corporate strategy and management consulting.

Eugene’s Humanities and Social Sciences education led to tremendous personal growth and also positioned him well for success in business by helping him develop foundational critical thinking and communications skills.

Victoria Guo, Associate Director, Scotiabank

Victoria works as an Associate Director in Liquidity Strategy at Scotiabank. Prior to joining Treasury, Victoria held several positions in Global Risk Management and was responsible for implementing liquidity stress testing and enterprise-wide market risk capital back testing model.

Victoria holds a MA degree of Economics from the University of Toronto, a Bachelor degree of Finance from Shanghai Jiao Tong University and is a CFA and FRM Charter holder.

Tanya Hoshi, Producer, Shopify

Tanya Hoshi is an award-winning film producer at Shopify Studios. She is also the Founder of Dhansak & Co., a streetwear brand, which she runs via Shopify. Tanya is immersed in the entrepreneurial landscape and happy to chat with anyone interested in entrepreneurship, working at Shopify, or working in the film industry.

Devansh Jain, Senior Manager, Product Strategy, nanopay Corporation

Devansh Jain has a Double Major in Economics and Commerce from the University of Toronto. Apart from roles in traditional fields like finance, consulting, and tech, Devansh has also taken time off to teach at a school in rural India, and spent time leading adventure groups into the BC wilderness. He currently works at nanopay, a digital payments company, where he joined as a Software Engineer but currently in Product.

Rebecca Laramée, HR Consultant

Rebecca is a social entrepreneur, philanthropist, and HR consultant, raising close to a million dollars for charities. An avid traveller with a focus on international development initiatives, Rebecca holds a post-graduate science degree from the University of Toronto. As seen in Forbes, and VICE, Rebecca is also passionate about inspiring millennial philanthropists, serving as Chair of the Board at Mount Sinai Hospital.

Elizabeth Leung, IT Developer, TD Bank 

Elizabeth graduated from UofT in 2017 with a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and a minor in Computer Science. She volunteered with multiple after school teaching programs during her undergrad and did a summer internship at TD Securities after her 3rd year. She returned to TD full time after graduation and is currently working mainly as a back-end IT Developer. Apart from enjoying coding and teaching, she likes indoor rock climbing and crocheting.

Lance McIntosh, CFO, CYGN Holdings Inc.

Lance McIntosh has over 40 years of experience in senior management, corporate finance and accounting and has held senior financial positions with a number of significant Canadian private and public corporations. He has specific expertise in financial operations management, financial administration and control, M&A, and both project and acquisition financing. Lance has overseen the financial operations, corporate development, and the ‘going public’ process for two major Canadian corporations. He has extensive senior relationships in both the public & private debt and equity markets in Canada.

Alexander Malaket, President, OPUS Advisory Services International Inc.

Alexander R. Malaket is the President of OPUS Advisory Services International Inc., a Canadian consultancy focused on international trade, trade financing and trade-related international development, and a Founding Partner of ESG Validation LLP in London, UK. Alexander serves on various international boards and industry bodies, including as Deputy Head of the Executive Committee, ICC Banking Commission Paris, and Advisor to Tin Hill Capital, Singapore. The author of UK-published “Financing Trade and International Supply Chains”, Alexander has undertaken a range of assignments in over forty countries, speaks at top-tier events around the globe, and has engaged in advocacy activity through B20/G20 working groups, the United Nations, the WTO and elsewhere. Alexander graduated from UofT in 1987 with majors in Economics and Political Science, and holds three professional designations in trade and trade finance.

Andrew Manis, Senior Manager, Strategy and Business Insights, RBC

Andrew currently provides thought leadership through data and research to inform decisions on third party engagements resulting in cost and value optimization. Previous to this role, Andrew spent a couple of years in RBC’s primary consulting team developing operating models, scaling robotic process automation, and developing digital strategy. Prior to this, he spent time as an IT project manager as well as a sales representative in the retail branch (TD). Critical thinking, problem solving, storyboarding, and collaboration skills have helped Andrew be successful in his roles to date.

Andrew holds a MBA from Carleton University and a HBSc from UofT (double Human Biology and Cells Systems Biology major).

Andrew is the president of a condo board and a UofT St Mike’s Young Alumni Committee member. He enjoys reading about innovation and technology and providing thought leadership on real estate.

Gary Margolis, Chief Executive Officer, Notogen Inc.

Gary Margolis is Notogen’s CEO. Prior to joining Notogen, Gary was the Managing Director, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer at DRI Capital Inc., one of the world’s largest, healthcare-focused private equity funds. During his tenure with DRI Capital, Gary conducted the legal and intellectual property due diligence, led the negotiations on, and played a leadership role in, more than a hundred pharmaceutical royalty acquisition opportunities. Gary was also DRI’s Chief Compliance Officer, with primary responsibility for overseeing the firm’s policies, procedures and compliance controls.

Prior to joining DRI Capital, Gary was a legal associate with Dewey Ballantine LLP in London, and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in New York, and began his legal career with Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP in Toronto. Gary practiced primarily in the areas of mergers and acquisitions and securities law.

Gary earned both his Bachelor of Sciences degree in Human Biology and his Juris Doctor legal degree from the University of Toronto.

Haroon Mir, Vice President Client Services, Ipsos

Haroon is a passionate market researcher with almost 20 years’ experience in the industry. Working with one of the world’s leading market research supplier, he has fostered long-term relationships with Canadian clients by designing, managing, and executing both quantitative and qualitative research projects for brands belonging to the Technology, Financial Services, Consumer Packaged Goods, Retail, and Audience Measurement sectors. In his more recent operations capacity, his focus has been on developing, communicating, and maintaining efficient, and globally consistent processes for online and mobile research. Furthermore, for the past three years, he has had several opportunities to share his knowledge and expertise mentoring future market researchers. Whether as a guest speaker for MBA Marketing classes at the University of Toronto Rotman’s School of Business or as an instructor at the University of Toronto School for Continuing Studies, he has introduced learners to various quantitative research approaches and the latest challenges facing the industry. He has an MBA from McMaster University, a BSc in Human Biology from the University of Toronto, and is currently a doctoral student at Athabasca University with his research focused on adoption barriers in the market research industry to non-traditional, advanced data collection techniques.

Lisa Mladenovic, Global Head of Transformation Delivery, Manulife (KEYNOTE SPEAKER)

As Global Head of Transformation Delivery Lisa is responsible for connecting the company strategy to results. She leads a team that oversees progress on various initiatives across the company. She is also the lead on an initiative to merge our two offices in Kitchener-Waterloo and shift to new ways of working.

Lisa has been with Manulife since 2011 most recently as Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer for Canada and was responsible for segment financial reporting, controls, planning and analysis.

She has also held roles as AVP Industry, Regulatory and Government Affairs where she was responsible for providing senior management with information on key industry, regulatory and government issues and AVP, Group Accounting Policy where she led a team responsible for interpreting and developing accounting policies in accordance with IFRS, U.S. GAAP/NAIC.

Prior to joining Manulife, Lisa worked as a financial consultant and held various finance roles at State Street, North York General Hospital and Shoppers Drug Mart.

Lisa holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Toronto, and is a CPA, CA

Chau-anne Nguyen, Co-operative Internship Program Liaison, Ryerson University

Chau-Anne graduated from the University of Toronto with an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics and French Language Learning. She kickstarted her HR career in the Government of Canada supporting multiple recruitment programs, including the Federal Student Work Experience Program (FSWEP) and Post-Secondary Recruitment (PSR). She later joined Ontario Power Generation as the single point of contact for the enterprise-wide Co-op program.

Chau-Anne is passionate about helping students reach their full potential and is looking forward to sharing her industry insights. She is a strong proponent that an Arts & Science degree can open up doors to a variety of career paths.

Meera Pandya, Managing Associate, Executive Recruitment, Korn Ferry

Meera Pandya earned a Hons. B.A. (1999) from the U of T, with a major in Sociology and a minor in Anthropology & History.

Meera has an unusual path for a graduate of the Faculty of Arts & Science.  She has 15+ years of experience in finance, accounting and client management, spanning diversified industries: banking, technology and non-profit.

She began her career at a major mutual funds company providing broker and client support, then shifted into Institutional Portfolio Accounting and Fund Accounting.  After leaving finance, Meera worked in Major Accounts with a global print technology firm.  Leveraging her financial acumen, she moved into Financial Analyst positions with two of Canada’s largest non-profit foundations.

At this time, Meera is very excited to be working in a field she knows is her real calling:  Executive Recruitment.  She’s found the perfect career cocktail, allowing her to utilize her people-oriented personality, her educational background, and her past work experiences.  Meera focuses on the financial services and real estate sector in Canada and the US.

She strongly believes in actively listening to clients and candidates to develop a true understanding of what they are seeking.   She looks forward to being the poster child to illustrate that a winding career path, with many bumps and stops, can still lead to a fulfilling destination.

Sidebar:  Meera’s daughter is currently an undergrad in the Faculty of Arts & Science at U of T.

Shamus Pikk, Team Lead, RBC Financial Group

With over 10 years experience at Canada’s premier financial institution, Shamus has a diversity of banking and IT experience. He’s currently leading a dynamic high performing multi-city team to migrate all RBC devices to the latest version of Microsoft Windows, in addition to managing all RBC’s business continuity facilities in Southern Ontario. When Shamus isn’t making a difference at work, he’s making a difference helping young self-starters start brilliant, impactful careers. Shamus main weakness continues to be chocolate and fried food – something he can’t solve!

Andy Smith, Senior Vice President, SGGG Fund Services Inc.

Andy Smith is a executive in the financial services industry specializing in offshore and alternative hedge fund administration. After spending the early part of his career in Bermuda, he returned home to Toronto’s SGGG Fund Services. As an undergrad, Andy was Editor-in-Chief at The Gargoyle, a writer for The Independent, a Cressy Award winner, and a barista at Diabolos Coffee Bar.

Mai Tran, Account Executive, Ritual

I wasn’t always planning on working in fashion but an internship opportunity during my experiential learning course at Innis College’s Urban Studies Program introduced me to Canada’s vibrant fashion and retail community. Since beginning my career at Town Shoes, I spent two years in London working for Muji Europe and Coach Europe. After five years working in fashion and retail, I decided to make a big change and now work for a Toronto startup, selling Ritual to restaurants across North America.

Ian Tripp, Sales Operations Manager, GlassHouse Systems Inc.

I was an RA and a TA during my undergrad BSc (7T7). After my MBA (7T9), I worked for IBM Canada in Sales, Education, Finance. After retirement from IBM, I have volunteered tremendously, I have worked as a Personal Finance Educator for the past 5 years, and I’ve worked as a part-time Consultant, then Sales Manager and am currently a Sales Operations Manager for an I/T Business Partner. This year I’ve also become a part-time coach for Half Marathon clinics. I run, cycle long-distances and love Astronomy in my spare time.

Nicholas Wei, Manager, TD Bank

Since joining Enterprise Process Excellence (EPE) as Manager at TD Bank in 2016, Nicholas has supported and led important projects for different pillars within the bank, list includes PC & Fraud, TDAF, TDS, SBB, Risk and Compliance, GAML, OCDO, and TDI, with the mandates to promote continuous improvement culture and to help the businesses achieve business targets using Lean Six Sigma methodologies.

Prior to this role, Nicholas spent 8 years as insurance professional in the insurance industry, with focus and expertise on home insurance, and was acting as Subject Matter Expert for TD Insurance Residential Claims to support EPE in implementing Claims Transformation project prior to join EPE.

Nicholas graduated from University of Toronto with a HBSc. In Criminology and Psychology in 2006. He achieved his Chartered Insurance Professional in 2012, and obtained his Lean Six Sigma Black Belt in 2018.

Victoria Wilkes, Associate Vice President, KPMG Corporate Finance Inc.

Victoria has a master’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Toronto, an undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Cambridge, UK and is a CFA charterholder. While at UofT and Cambridge, she conducted research developing quantitative models to investigate individual and group strategic interactions under uncertainty and to understand the dynamics of social and economic networks. After graduating, Victoria worked as a Technology Risk Consultant at KPMG, before transferring to KPMG Corporate Finance Inc., where she is an Associate Vice President focusing on Mergers & Acquisitions advisory.

Peter Wong, Manager, Financial Information & Processing Support, U of T

A manager with over 14 years of experience at the University of Toronto with expertise in financial management, risk analysis and operational reviews.

Jinda Yang, Global Trading Finance Associate Manager, RBC

My name is JINDA YANG, with Double Specialists from my Undergraduate studies at U of T; My master of Biostatistics at U of T focusing area is the Machine Learning, AI and Big data. During my undergraduate studies, I was working at Deloitte, Toronto General Hospital and Scotiabank with several different fields related to Data analysis, research assistant, Trading and Investing. Currently, I am working at RBC towards the Global Trading Finance across the World.

I do Investment, Trading and Data related things during my career development, and for my free time, I do Snowboarding, Shooting, Scuba Diving, and Golf.

Yvanna Zakrzewski, Senior Executive Assistant, Canopy Growth Corporation

Yvanna Zakrzewski is a Strategic Executive Assistant who supports the Chief Commercial Officer and the VP of International Market Expansion in continually expanding Canopy Growth Corporation’s market-leading position as the world’s largest cannabis company.

Yvanna spent eight years as an executive herself, most recently as VP of Investor Relations at TSX-listed Verde AgriTech. Having also trained in applied psychology and mindfulness, Yvanna’s combination of commercial expertise and advanced organizational behaviour acumen have positioned her to uniquely deliver on the holistic mandate of the new evolution of C-suite executive assistants.

After years of leading fast-paced Bay Street teams and interacting with hundreds of fellow executives, Yvanna knows that an empathetic, dynamic and steadfast assistant who is capable of, and confident enough to offer strategic counsel, is a staple on the teams of most high-performing C-suite executives at market-leading organizations. Yvanna has spearheaded the investor relations and regulatory activities of two capital financings resulting in raising a total of $43 million as well as contributed in successfully obtaining an environmental permit during a highly challenging geopolitical climate.

In addition to her extensive corporate experience, Yvanna volunteers as a counsellor at Canada’s National Ballet School, protecting the emotional, physical and mental well-being of young dancers as they pursue professional careers in dance.



November 20
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm