2017-2018 CFA Institute Research Challenge

CFA Society Kansas City will host the eighth annual CFA Institute Research Challenge-Kansas City.  The local level of this global competition will be held on February 17, 2018.  During the Kansas City round, six teams of three to five students from Kansas State University, Missouri State University, Pittsburg State University, Truman State University, University of Kansas, and University of Missouri-Kansas City will compete for a place in the regional final in Boston, Massachusetts in March 2018, where they will meet other teams from the region. The top two teams from the regional will then compete in the Global Final, to be held in Seoul, Korea on 20 April 2018.

We want to thank the following members who have graciously volunteered their time to provide guidance and expertise to the next generation of analysts and portfolio managers as mentors to these teams:

Jarold Boettcher, CFA                           Jeff Hoernemann, CFA
Vern Cushenbery, CFA                          David Larson, CFA
Jason Harrison, CFA                             Zachary Swartz, CFA

Unique Opportunity for Students Worldwide

The CFA Institute Research Challenge offers students the unique opportunity to learn from leading industry experts and compete with peers from the world’s top finance programs.  This annual educational initiative promotes best practices in equity research among the next generation of analysts through hands-on mentoring and intensive training in company analysis and presentation skills.  Last year nearly 2,500 students from over 546 universities in 45 countries participated in the Research Challenge.

The Challenge gathers students, investment industry professionals, executives from publicly traded companies, and corporate sponsors together locally, regionally, and globally for a real world competition.  Participation in the Challenge promotes best practices in equity research and company analysis, as students research, analyze, and report on a company as if they are practicing analysts.  Additionally, all participants are introduced to and held to the standard of the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct.

Participating Teams:

  • Kansas State University
  • Missouri State University
  • Pittsburg State University
  • Truman state University
  • University of Kansas
  • University of Missouri-Kansas City



All participating students are required to register. Do so as early as possible to receive your free copy of the Equity Asset Valuation ebook. Read more…


Get acquainted with the Official Rules. Read more…


Review the resources specifically selected for students competing in the CFA Institute Research Challenge. Read more…

How the Challenge Works

Local CFA Societies, CFA Institute, and other organizations host and launch a local Research Challenge in conjunction with their participating universities.  The universities assemble teams of 3-5 business and finance students who work directly with a company in researching and preparing a company analysis.  The team’s final presentations are locally evaluated by high-profile panels of heads of research, portfolio managers, and chief investment officers from the world’s top firms.  The local champions advance to regional competitions in the Americas, Asia, and Europe and then to the Global Finale.

Challenge Components

Analysis of a Public Company
Teams research a publicly traded company. Company management presents to the teams and participates in a Q&A session.

Mentoring By a Professional Research Analyst
Each team works with an investment professional, who mentors the team on research process and reviews and critiques its report.

Writing a Research Report
Each team produces an intitiation of coverage report on its chosen company. The report is reviewed and scored by a group of judges.

Presentation of Research to a High-Profile Panel of Experts
Teams present their research to a panel of experts from top financial institutions. The team with the highest combined report and presentation score is the winner.

Advancement to the Global Final
The winners of local competitions advance to compete against teams within their geographic region, culminating in a global finale competition.


Participate in the CFA Institute Research Challenge!

The CFA Institute Research Challenge is an opportunity for students to experience the role and professional practices of an analyst. It is an extension of the curriculum for those interested in a career in investment management through contact with a mentor from the CFA Society Kansas City. It is also an opportunity to be awarded scholarship assistance in the process of achieving the CFA designation.

Volunteer opportunities include graders and mentors. Both present the chance to get involved with CFA Society Kansas City and give back to the next generation of analysts!

Grade student research reports: Analysts/portfolio managers needed to grade research reports. Schools remain anonymous in this process. The top scoring teams advance to the next round.

Mentor students: Each team is assigned a CFA Society Kansas City Member to assist them in the research challenge. Time spent with team is limited to 6 hours.

CFA Institute Research Challenge

For additional information on the contest or to participate, please contact Laurian Lytle at laurian@lytlemail.com or 913.787.1279.

2016-2017 Winning Team –
University of Missouri – Kansas City



2015-2016 Winning Team –
University of Kansas


Tommy Luallin, Meredith Harrington, Lauren Miller,
Mike Tokic and mentor Brendan Cielocha

Paul Frauen, Adam McClusky, Sam Snider, and Faculty Advisor, John Clark, Ph.D, CFA

Paul Frauen, Adam McClusky, Sam Snider,
and Faculty Advisor, John Clark, Ph.D, CFA


2014-2015 Winning Team –
University of Missouri-Kansas City


2013-2014 Winning Team –
University of Missouri-Kansas City

Derek Bembry, Jacob Boan, Jerod Stricklin,
and Faculty Advisor, John Clark, PhD, CFA

Kendal Clawson, CJ Heinz, Jonathon Mason, Jerrod Reddick and Faculty Advisor, Scott Hendrix

Faculty Advisor Scott Hendrix, Kendal Clawson,
CJ Heinz, Jonathon Mason, Jerrod Reddick

2012-2013 Winning Team –
Kansas State University

2011-2012 Winning Team – University of Kansas

KU Team advanced to the Regional Americas Semi-Finals.

Additional 2011-2012 Teams

  • Kansas State – Runner Up
  • Missouri State
  • Pittsburg State
  • University of Central Missouri
  • University of Missouri-Kansas City

Thad Sieracki, Jake Painter, John Pecis, Sean O’Neill, Dieter Schrader

Faculty Advisor Dieter Schrader,
Thomas Freeman, Thomas John, David Larson

2010-2011 Winning Team – University of Kansas

KU Team advanced to the Regional Americas Semi-Finals.

Additional 2010-2011 Teams

  • Kansas State University
  • University of Central Missouri
  • University of Missouri-Columbia