Applied Portfolio Management Program

Applied Portfolio Management Program

The Applied Portfolio Management Program is a student-run investment fund that manages $1.5 million in assets. The APMP is not a “course” – it is a part‐time commitment that offers hands‐on work experience. 

The students make all the decisions when it comes to the fund. They receive guidance from an Investment Advisory Committee (IAC) of professionals and faculty. Students pursuing careers in financial services find this experience invaluable in gaining real‐life exposure to the investment industry.   

The APMP’s clients are:

All investments made within the fund must be in accordance with the Investment Policy Statement’s (IPS) guidelines agreed on by the clients.

The portfolio managers (or PMs) are students responsible for managing the fund. They make all the investment decisions, with input from the Investment Advisory Committee (IAC) and the program director. Five times throughout the term, the PMs present on the fund’s performance to the IAC. The presentation includes a report on: 

  • asset allocation
  • performance attribution
  • risk
  • environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations
  • any proposed changes to the holdings 

The PMs follow the APMP's responsible investment philosophy. This integrates ESG factors while focusing on a long‐term investment horizon. All portfolio managers communicate and collaborate with each other. It is important to do this on an ongoing basis and to come to a consensus on all major decisions. Each PM is in charge of monitoring news and financial market movements in 2 to 3 of the fund’s holdings, which they report to the other PMs. 

To qualify to become a portfolio manager, students must complete the Applied Investment Management Course (AIMC). UVic Continuing Studies offers this non-credit course from November to April each year. The Applied Investment Management Course is available to 16 students and taught online with classes one week out of every month. AIMC culminates with students making a stock pitch on a TSX‐listed company to a panel of industry professionals. Mr. Saurabh Suryavanshi teaches the AIMC. He is a portfolio manager at Dixon Mitchell Investment Counsel in Vancouver, BC. 

Following the completion of the AIMC, successful students apply to become portfolio managers (PMs) in June. During July and August, incoming portfolio managers are trained by the outgoing ones. Each September, they take over the fund and manage it for 12 months. 

The PMs work closely together as a team. They manage themselves, dividing the following tasks among the team:

  • equity and fixed income research
  • macroeconomic analysis
  • asset allocation
  • performance attribution
  • risk management
  • portfolio monitoring 

Communication skills are vital as students may be on exchange abroad or employed on internships during this 14‐month period.

The analysts support the portfolio managers throughout their term. They report to the PMs, who integrate their analysis into their decisions. 

To qualify, students must complete two Business or Economics courses and achieve a minimum grade of 80%. In September of their 4th year, we invite students to apply to become:

  • ESG analysts
  • equity analysts
  • fixed income analysts
  • economists
  • risk managers 

Analysts support and report to the portfolio managers, who have ultimate decision‐making authority on the fund. These roles are for a minimum 8‐month term. Please note that exceptional analysts may be able to advance to more senior roles based on performance. 

The course requirements to apply for analyst positions are:

  • Business path: complete COM 371 Management Finance in 3rd year followed by COM 445 Corporate Finance and Valuation in 4th year (summer semester).
  • Economics path: complete ECON 305 Money and Banking followed by ECON 435 Financial Economics

Due to internship commitments or personal reasons, students may not have completed either COM 445 or ECON 435 by September of each year. In this case, exceptional candidates who are enrolled in one of these courses for the Fall semester (September‐December) may be invited to apply for analyst positions in September. Their participation in APMP is conditional on satisfactorily completing this course as a co‐requisite. 

Every September, the incoming portfolio managers hire two to three analysts to join the team. The PMs and analysts work collaboratively together and seek to reach a consensus on all decisions affecting the fund.

The Investment Policy Statement (IPS) outlines the APMP asset allocation. The  fund’s two clients, UVic Treasury and BC Investment Management Corporation (BCI), agree upon this asset allocation. The benchmark asset allocation is: 

  • 30% Canadian equities (selected from the TSX Composite Index)
  • 30% US equities (selected from the S&P 500 Index)
  • 40% Canadian fixed income (investment grade only) 

The fund can operate outside these weights, by being overweight in some assets and underweight in others. It must never go over 70% equity or 50% fixed income. 

The fund's performance is benchmarked against three indices:

  • 30% S&P/TSX Composite Index
  • 30% S&P 500 Index
  • 40% against the FTSE TMX Canadian Universe Bond Index 

The portfolio managers track the fund’s total return against this benchmark. At year‐end 2021, the fund underperformed the benchmark with a return of 15.03% vs. 15.35% for the benchmark. 

As of year‐end 2021, the fund was overweight in equity and underweight in fixed income with the following allocations:

  • 3% Canadian equities
  • 34% US equities
  • 31.3% Canadian fixed income

The APMP’s investable universe is limited to Canadian and US equities exchanged on:

  • the S&P/TSX Composite Index
  • the S&P 500 Index 

In terms of fixed income securities, the fund is restricted to investment grade securities issued by Canadian listed companies, government, and government‐related institutions. The fund can also hold Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) that hold securities in its investable universe. Furthermore, there is a regulation against the holding of derivative products as these are riskier assets. 

As of year‐end 2021, the fund held:

  • 10 Canadian equities
  • 11 US equities
  • 2 fixed income bond ETFs
  • a small amount of cash

Key contacts


Here are some annual reports from the Applied Portfolio Management Program:

2022 Annual Report

2021 Annual Report

2020 Annual Report

2019 Annual Report

2018 Annual Report

Description of roles

Portfolio Managers (PMs)

Portfolio Managers (PMs) are responsible for making investment decisions on behalf of the investment fund while reporting on performance and attribution to the Investment Advisory Committee (the “IAC”). PMs must ensure the fund’s investments comply with the Investment Policy Statement (“IPS”). The Portfolio Managers report directly to both the IAC and the Program Director.

PMs are responsible for the generation and vetting of investment ideas, research, presentations, and fund management. While individual PMs may take responsibility for a particular function (e.g. performance attribution), PMs must collaborate and reach consensus on investment decisions recommended for inclusion in the fund. PMs are also expected to complete ad hoc requests from the IAC, and the Program Director. PMs prepare external reports based on the UVic Student Investment Fund Guidelines on Reporting. They must also comply with the UVic Student Investment Fund Statement of Ethics and Conflict of Interest Policy and related UVic policies.

Upon completion of their term, the PMs must prepare an Annual Report. PMs are ambassadors for the program, including attending information sessions, public functions, and industry events. All PMs are expected to attend all meetings and seminars, subject to any reasonable conflicts.

ESG Analyst

ESG Analysts are responsible for incorporating environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors into APMP’s investment decisions across asset classes. The ESG analyst is responsible for maintaining and enhancing APMP’s ESG investment framework, outlined in the APMP 2019 Annual Report (p.13‐15). They must become familiar with the SASB Materiality map, the UN’s Principles of Responsible Investment (PRI), the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the University of Victoria’s Responsible Investment Policy. A key initiative will be evaluating the carbon footprint of the portfolio’s investments and bringing it in line with UVic’s decarbonization objectives. ESG analysis is a part of screening for new investments and valuation. Reporting to the PMs, the ESG analyst will contribute to market updates, company reports, and investment pitches at IAC meetings.

Equity Analyst

Equity Analysts are responsible for monitoring and reporting on the existing Canadian and US equity holdings. They would also be involved in screening for new investments and building valuation models under the supervision of the PMs. These students are expected to excel in the analysis of financial statements, the calculation and interpretation of financial ratios, relative valuation based on the market multiples of comparable companies, and intrinsic valuation using discounted cash flow (DCF) models. The equity analysts will contribute to equity market updates, company reports, and new stock pitches for IAC meetings.

Fixed Income Analyst

Fixed Income Analyst are responsible for monitoring and reporting on the existing Canadian and US fixed income holdings. They would also be involved in the analysis of different bond ETFs, credit analysis for the individual company holdings in the equity portfolio, and research on fixed income markets in Canada and the USA. These students are expected to excel in bond valuation, credit analysis and credit ratings, and modeling the yield curve. The fixed analysts will contribute to bond market updates, and the forecast and impact of monetary policy for presentation at IAC meetings. They would assist with performance attribution for the fixed income portfolio.


The Economist is responsible for monitoring and reporting on the macroeconomic outlook for Canada and the United States. They would be responsible for collecting and summarizing public and private sector economic forecasts, reporting on monetary and fiscal policy, and interpreting the latest statistical releases. The focus would be on assisting both the equity and fixed income analysts in their roles, such as providing forecasts for GDP, inflation, interest rates, foreign exchange rates, oil, and other key inputs to valuation models. They would be responsible for the economic forecast at IAC meetings. They would also assist with the macroeconomic input to asset allocation and decisions to over/under‐weight different industries.

Risk Manager

Managing risk is integral to APMP’s fiduciary role in managing its clients’ funds. The risk manager will be responsible for evaluating, monitoring, and communicating the risks with APMP’s portfolio. This role has three main functions: (1) ensuring compliance with the Investment Policy Statement (IPS), (2) monitoring specified risk metrics for the portfolio, and (3) assisting the PMs with performance attribution. The PMs, Program Manager, and IAC members will define key risk metrics to manage concentration risk, credit risk, liquidity risk, and market risk. The risk managers would be responsible for tracking and reporting on these metrics at IAC meetings.


General information
Students who want to receive more information about this program can contact Dr. Michael King.

How to support the program
For more information about how to make a gift, or become involved with the Applied Portfolio Management Program in other ways, please contact

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