Mehdi Saedi receives Dean's Convocation Medal

June 09, 2013

Q: What happens when Simon Fraser University hands over $11 million of its endowment funds to a team of graduate students to manage? (Hint: It's not a rhetorical question: This is part of what graduate students do in the MSc Finance program at the Beedie School of Business.)

A: When the portfolio manager is Mehdi Saedi, it means that the funds outperformed their benchmark, both in terms of relative and risk-adjusted measures, and the university received not only higher returns on their investment, but also improved risk management procedures that are currently being adopted by the University's Treasurer for SFU's entire endowment portfolio.

Mehdi says, "I had the privilege to represent SFU and SIAS at the RISE conference in Dayton, Ohio, and explain to the managing professionals how we run the largest student-run fund in Canada. SIAS has won first place in the Balanced Investment Style category in 2012 and 2013 based on its performance in 2011–2012 and 2012–2013 respectively."

Making money for the university was only one of his accomplishments. Mehdi is graduating at the top of his MSc Finance cohort group, and the graduate program reports that he ranks among the top 1% of graduates from SFU's finance programs over the past decade, achieving a 4.2 CGPA for all of his graduate courses.

His supervisor adds that Mehdi was a constructive force in his cohort: "He was one of those rare students who made a real difference in the program. He was greatly concerned about the wellbeing of all students, and worked tirelessly to ensure that all students in his cohort were actively involved and benefitted to the fullest from the extra-curricular events and activities organized for them."

In 2012, Mehdi did a Mitacs Accelerate Internship at Markit Analytics in Vancouver. His project for Markit was recently selected as the best project of the 2012 MSc finance program, and he was subsequently hired by Markit as a financial engineer.

On behalf of SFU, we congratulate Mehdi Saedi on his outstanding achievements which are being recognized with the award of the Dean of Graduate Studies Convocation Medal as one of SFU's most outstanding graduate students from the Beedie School of Business.

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