Chandra Smith, CFA, FDP

A brief introduction:  

Hello Everyone! My name is Chandra Smith.  I fell in love with Finance when I was in university. I did not know that I had an aptitude for this topic, but it quickly became a passion of mine. I have had a varied career in the industry as an Investment Analyst and Risk Manager in Corporate Credit, in client-facing roles in both Banking and Asset Management, but my current role in Wealth Management as a Product Owner of a Web-based application that aggregates Big Data to help Advisors better understand their Book of investments is what drew me to want to learn more about where Data Science can fit into the picture. Once I recognized that technology is just a wrapper for data, my perception of data changed to one of exponential possibilities. 

Why did I take up the FDP challenge? 

I pursued the FDP designation because I have always viewed data as an information asset, and I want to extract far more value than meets the eye. The FDP Charter has given me a new way to consider how to use non-traditional methods to solve previously unsolvable business problems. 

What's great about FDP: 

The FDP curriculum has given me the knowledge to view business problems from a new lens and has opened exciting opportunities for me to participate as a Business Representative in multiple Data Science initiatives resulting in providing insights that would be impossible to achieve without leveraging machine learning. With domain expertise I can comfortably represent the Business, but now I can equally have an informed conversation with our Data Science team about their application of various Models. They appreciate my newfound knowledge immensely and are impressed with what the FDP curriculum taught me. We now collectively make a much better team in tackling business problems. 

The FDP designation has given me far more knowledge about Machine Learning methodologies than I had expected and has given me the confidence to lean into using Data Science. I have a better understanding of where it can be useful, but also what kinds of questions to consider when thinking through whether a problem can be addressed by applying Machine Learning. I believe that taking the FDP program has put me at the forefront of the future of the Finance industry. 

Attending events hosted by the FDP Institute allows me to stay current on new ways to solve problems in Finance through leveraging machine learning. 

My advice for aspiring industry professionals: 

Be open to various opportunities as this industry is constantly evolving and it pays to have multiple skill sets and experiences. Education doesn’t end after you finish formal schooling. As you gain exposure to various facets of the industry you can determine which sub-sets of finance interest you and then pursue related education that is specialized. Be a “Captain” and chart your own career path based on areas that appeal to you. 

About Chandra Smith

Chandra Smith, CFA, FDP, Portfolio Advisor, RBC Wealth Management, Canada 

I am currently a Portfolio Advisor supporting Investment Advisors across Canada with Portfolio Construction and Investment Management best practices. I am also a Product Owner of a Web based application that illustrates a transparent view of investment exposures by leveraging Big Data. My role has expanded over time to include working with our Data Scientists to apply machine learning models to our data to enhance our ability to inform the Business, which in turn generates better decision making, produces higher efficiency, improves risk mitigation and supports product growth. 




Chandra Smith, CFA, FDP  

Portfolio Advisor

RBC Wealth Management, Canada



Chandra Smith - Translator



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