The McClelland Financial Group
Engineers May 28, 2015

Engineers: Smart vs Professional

Specializing in engineers, I have come to realize that I enjoy working with intelligent people. I find myself enjoying the conversations outside of finance more than I do talking about the markets. We have a great depth of engineering clients that work on amazing things and I find it expands my knowledge base just knowing that some of these things exist and how much time and effort is put into them. Over the past few years we have started a lunch and learn program that is attended by many engineers. We have had great feedback from those who have engaged our services as to how they feel about having their financial affairs handled by professionals.

Herein lies the issue of being smart vs. being a professional. Is it that these clients are not smart enough to handle their own finances? Do not understand how the markets work? Not at all. They recognize that simply comprehending a subject does not qualify them as a professional in that field.

I consider myself to be a reasonably smart guy. That said, could I go home every night and study books on engineering? Read about historical engineering feats? Brush up on my physics and calculus? Yes, I could, but the fact remains is nobody in their right mind would trust me to design a crane! Even further, if I designed a crane and successfully used it on some jobs, would you put your life at risk using it? Of course not! My crane may have gotten lucky here and there, but perhaps it was not exposed to the many elements that have to be taken into consideration when engineering a crane (i.e. terminal stress levels; lifting loads on a windy day; etc.)

Case in point, many engineers make this very mistake. Regardless of your intellect, it does not make you a professional in every field or industry. Substitute an investment portfolio with the crane. Many people have designed an investment portfolio over the past five years and it has performed very well. The caveat, in engineering terms, is designing a crane for half the price of what professional engineers charge and to prove your crane’s ability, show it can lift the required weight under perfect conditions.

We, at The McClelland Financial Group, are professionals. We have 4 CFP’s (Certified Financial Planners) in the office. We have seen the markets at their best and worst and know how to respond. We are well aware of the financial components that lead to a successful plan. In my experience, I have realized that one of engineers’ biggest pet peeves is when engineers by trade, refer to themselves as professional engineers. The sentiment is the same in the financial arena. Similar to how you have gained the trust of your clients for being a professional engineer, trust in the fact that you have hired a financial professional to manage your affairs with the same duty of care and responsibility.

Mike Connon, B.Sc, CFP
Senior Financial Planning Advisor, Co-Branch Manager, Certification in Estate Planning and Trust Strategies

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  • We are pleased to announce Andrew Moser as the winner of the 2020 The McClelland Financial Group Scholarship in the amount of $1,500.


    “I am currently studying Engineering at the University of Toronto. I am a positive, outgoing and athletic person that loves taking initiatives. I thrive in a setting where I can take on challenges and learn new things. I enjoy trying new things and stepping out of my comfort zone. This includes public speaking in front of large crowds and giving presentations. In the future, I hope to work for an engineering firm and make a change in the world.”

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  • We are pleased to announce Egheghe Ade-Akhani as the winner of the 2019 The McClelland Financial Group Scholarship in the amount of $1,500.

  • We are pleased to announce Rachel Boyer as the winner of the 2018 The McClelland Financial Group Scholarship in the amount of $1,500.

  • We are pleased to announce Kathleen Turner as the winner of the 2017 The McClelland Financial Group Scholarship in the amount of $1,500.

  • Emily has volunteered for over 250 hours, maintained jobs throughout high school and graduated with a 96% average. A sports enthusiast in soccer, hockey and volleyball and now a freshman working towards her Hons.B.Sc., she has started her journey to pursue her goal of a medical degree and to eventually work in pediatric psychiatry or neurology.

    Her mission statement discusses “Moving forward into my adult life I will maintain my strong work ethic and conduct myself with compassion and empathy. While staying true to my realism, I will set goals that will challenge myself and I will stop at nothing to work towards them.”

    Her recommendations from various institutions repeated over and over again how wonderful a person Emily is becoming inside and out. An example of this is “Emily demonstrates a strong work ethic with an attention to detail that so few others her age do. She is a genuine leader and has the ability to command the respect of her peers while also being gifted at bringing out the best in others. She has an astonishing ability to illuminate the most complex of concepts to her classmates. She’s also the kind of person who can play three sets of volleyball and not break a sweat, and yet underneath her elegant surface lies a fierce competitor with an adventurous spirit. But perhaps what is more impressive, is her ability to balance her life as a student, an athlete, and an honorable citizen.”

    Emily believes planning, research and budgeting are essential tools that contribute to financial responsibility and should be taught and practiced young. Many youths are being thrown into an adult world with the expectation of being financially independent with little or no experience managing money. Being able to plan and budget based can start as early as the use of an allowance in children.

    Her current financial goal is to graduate university debt-free…Great Goal Emily!!!

    Emily with all your motivation, spirit and drive we know you will do something great. So.. Get going. Move forward. Aim High.

    Here at The McClelland Financial Group, we are proud to award Emily with a $1,500 scholarship. Emily, we are confident that you will succeed in whatever endeavour to which you set your mind. The world is yours to discover, and we are excited to hear updates on your journey in learning and knowledge.

    Warm regards,
    The McClelland Financial Group



    “Financial responsibility is a multifaceted skill that spans over generations and various scenarios in everyone’s lives. From learning to ration an allowance, to navigating post secondary expenses or opening an RESP, financial responsibility is the ability to plan based on financial knowledge, and more importantly execute that plan to the best of your abilities.

    To me, this responsibility means creating budgets both long term and short term that allow me to pursue a post-secondary education in science and hopefully enter medical school debt free. By reducing expenses wherever possible, staying aware and knowledgeable about my financial position and continually working hard, my goal is to enter the work force in medicine either debt free or close to it.

    This scholarship money has not only been a wonderful reinforcer of good time management habits and hard work, but will also be directly deposited into my savings for post-secondary tuition in order to help me achieve my goals of financial stability as a young adult. This has encouraged me to continue working hard and will be a great supplement for my educational savings.

    I am extremely honoured to be a recipient of the award.  I am extremely grateful for the recognition and support of my efforts in academics and the community.  In my first few months in Life Science at McMaster University I have gained an even greater respect for the value of education and the financial investment it requires, and would just like to sincerely thank The McClelland Financial Group for all of their support in my educational endeavours.”

  • We are pleased to announce Liam Donaghy as the winner of the 2015 McClelland Scholarship in the amount of $1,500.

    Liam is a recent graduate of Cardinal Carter Academy where he achieved honour roll status 4 times, and was accepted into university with a 92% average. But academics don’t tell the whole story. Liam was a member of the senior wind ensemble, played tennis and badminton and was an active tutor for his peers in math and science. He also participated in the Western University Science Olympics and received the top score for his school this year in the Canadian Senior Mathematics Contest.

    Liam’s extra curricular hobbies include playing piano, guitar and trumpet. He was the captain of his hockey team last year and the assistant coach for a younger team in the same league where he has played for the past 10 years. A true athlete, he also loves playing soccer and baseball, and even serves as an umpire for the North York Baseball Association…WOW Impressive!!!

    Liam also believes in helping out his community and has been honoured to receive a bronze level of the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, which recognizes outstanding achievement in community service, skill development, physical recreation and outdoor adventure. The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award program is available to everyone. It allows individuals to challenge themselves and grow and mature in a supportive environment with their peers. Liam is also an active volunteer within his neighbourhood community centre. In the winter months he is part of a team which established a natural outdoor ice rink when a city counsellor sent out a call for help.

    Liam says “My mission is to live a full and rewarding life surrounded by a supportive community of family, friends and colleagues. My goal is to live this life with financial stability, a social conscience and a passion for what brings me to work every day. Professionally, my ambition is to establish a career in the field of applied science, and continue to be a strong collaborator and lifelong learner.”

    His current financial goal is to graduate university debt-free…Great Goal Liam!!!

    Liam will start University in September 2015 in the Chemical Engineering Program. He has also qualified for the $2000 assurance scholarship program.

    Liam you are definitely on your way to having a fantastic journey secured by your maturity and your motivation to succeed.

    Here at The McClelland Financial Group, we are proud to award Liam with a $1,500 scholarship. Liam, we are confident that you will succeed in whatever endeavour to which you set your mind. The world is yours to discover, and we are excited to hear updates on your journey in learning and knowledge. Once again congratulations Liam; we hope this helps put a dent in your tuition.

    Warm regards,
    The McClelland Financial Group



    “Responsibility in any area of life starts with knowledge and includes a plan to apply that knowledge with commitment and accountability. For me, financial responsibility started with learning the value of money from a young age, as I was given the opportunity to practice earning, spending and saving money.

    Making responsible financial decisions as a young adult requires some knowledge of money management principles along with conscious decision making. I make an effort to continuously consider needs versus wants, and look beyond immediate gain by setting my mind to long term goals. This has allowed me to effectively balance my income with wise spending, saving and investment choices. Thinking about potential purchases before swiping my debit card, as well as reviewing monthly bank statements, has helped me to avoid any accumulation of debt. This way I am able to keep my daily financial choices on track and aligned with my overall financial plan.

    Setting saving goals for larger purchases, travel, education and potential emergencies are important to consider in advance. Something as simple as directly investing monetary gifts received on special occasions, has helped me to prepare for many of these longer term financial goals such as saving for post-secondary education.

    I am honoured to receive this generous scholarship and am grateful to The McClelland Financial Group for the recognition and financial support this award offers me. I am looking forward to starting my undergraduate studies in chemical engineering at the University of Toronto this September. This scholarship will supplement my education savings fund and be applied directly to my university tuition.”

  • We are pleased to announce Jayme Stokes as the winner of the 2014 McClelland Scholarship in the amount of $1,500. As the 18-year-old granddaughter of one of our clients, Jayme has demonstrated academic excellence that she has balanced in tandem with her community service and extra-curricular activities. With a grade point average of 4.25 Jayme did not go unnoticed to her teachers and family. Her grandparents are particularly proud of her, raving to their financial advisor on what a spectacular young lady she has become. Jayme’s path has taken her into law enforcement, a career she has not chosen lightly. In order to focus more on her career path she has joined Centennial College to participate in a joint program with the Police Foundation. From there she would apply for criminology at the University of Toronto. Jayme has an application in to volunteer at OPP as part of their auxiliary team (volunteer citizen officers) which would allow her to broaden her knowledge in relation to criminology.

    Jayme is not only an outstanding and focused student she was also engaged in high school clubs including the swim team, the choir club and the rowing crew. Her references note her as intelligent, confident, helpful, respectful and a born leader. Jayme’s mission in life is to be happy in what she does and participate in activities that will push her to be at her best. She wants to find a place in her life where she will be happy with her career and not let others dictate her emotions nor to settle for anything less then than that she is capable. Here at The McClelland Financial Group, we are proud to award Jayme with a $1,500 scholarship. Jayme, we are confident that you will succeed in whatever endeavour to which you set your mind. The world is yours to discover, and we are excited to hear updates on your journey in learning and knowledge. Once again congratulations Jayme; we hope this puts a dent in your tuition.

    Warm regards,
    The McClelland Financial Group



    “I would like to formally thank you for providing this opportunity for youth, and for me. I plan on putting all the money towards my next semester in school, and I cannot put forth enough thanks. Throughout everyone’s lives, at some point or another, working hard is inevitable. I have worked hard in school, managing to graduate a year early and maintain a 92 average throughout my first year of College. I haven’t achieved what I have for anyone but myself, to help myself move forward. However, being recognized for my hard work, and receiving help in continuing to achieve is beyond amazing. For this I thank you all.

    So in case I haven’t said it enough, Thank you”

  • We are pleased to announce Jake Ranot as the 2013 winner of the 2013 McClelland Scholarship in the amount of $2,500. As the 18-year-old son of one of our clients, Jake has demonstrated academic excellence that he has balanced in tandem with his community service and extra-curricular activities. Jake’s academic standing of a 94% average was far from average. His efforts have paid off and earned him admission to study in London at Western University’s Biochemistry program. Jake is not only an outstanding student, he also engaged in various sports including serving as captain of his high school’s all-boys swim team in his final year, a football coach for the Toronto Flag Football League and has entered many races, including the Sporting Life 10k Run for Kids with Cancer. But it doesn’t stop there. Jake has co-founded a multicultural committee dedicated to engaging all Canadians in a celebration of diversity, was on his high school debate team, and served as a lifeguard and canoe specialist at a camp in Ottawa. Despite his youth, Jake has lofty goals and aspires to graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree. Following his undergraduate studies, Jake hopes to gain admission to medical school, where he would like to work towards curing the world of one less disease in his lifetime. As Jake puts it, “My mission is to shape myself into a human scientist. The scientist will strive to make the world a better place by helping people live healthier lives. The human being will make the world a better place by touching people’s souls. My joy will come from these achievements.” Ah, to be young again! Here at The McClelland Financial Group, we are proud to award Jake with a $2,500 scholarship. Jake, we are confident that you will succeed in whatever endeavour you set your mind to. The world is yours to discover, and we are excited to hear updates on your journey in learning and knowledge. Once again congratulations Jake; we hope this puts a dent in your tuition.

    Warm regards,
    The McClelland Financial Group



    “I would like to thank Assante and everyone at The McClelland Financial Group for this scholarship. More important than the scholarship prize money itself was the recognition I felt. I work hard for my school marks and other accomplishments but one does not always see immediate results because they may actually be years away. That might discourage some and lead to reduced work efforts. Recognition like this helps remind me that working hard can be more than just its own reward. Thanks, Mr. McClelland I cannot think of anything smarter to do with my prize money than ask you to invest it for me in my TFSA.”

  • After graduating with a Bachelor of Administrative Studies with Honours in Finance John joined The McClelland Financial Group of Assante Capital Management Ltd. in February 2016 as a Service Associate. Eager to learn and grow within the Financial industry, John has completed his Canadian Securities Courses, Conducts and Practices, Wealth Management Essentials and is currently working towards the LLQP Insurance certification.

    After gaining experience in the financial services industry while in the service department at The McClelland Financial Group, John is now ready to take on the new challenge of being a Financial Advisor. He will be a welcomed addition to an already accomplished team and will be another young professional that can appeal to a younger demographic of clients.

    Outside of work John’s passions include travelling, playing hockey, volleyball and golf.

    905-771-5200 ext. 225 | [email protected]

  • Chelsey has been in the financial services industry since the beginning of her studies at University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) in 2010. While studying finance at UOIT, she worked part-time at TD Bank as a Customer Services Representative (bank teller) until achieving her Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) degree in 2014.

    Chelsey has her Canadian Securities (CSC) designation and is working towards her Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation. At The McClelland Financial Group Chelsey is known for her great rapport with clients and striving to meet her client’s needs is one of her top priorities.

    Outside of work, Chelsey’s passion is health, fitness and nutrition. She is an avid member of a cross fit gym in her community and has participated in many charitable runs such as the CIBC Run for the Cure, Toronto Yonge Street 10k as well as other races such as the Prison Break Race and Spartan Race. Chelsey is a refreshing, young professional who can appeal and relate to our younger demographic and someone who is excited and passionate about enhancing the financial lives of our clients.

    905-771-5200 ext. 228 | [email protected]

  • Carlo entered the financial services industry following his graduation from Wilfrid Laurier University. He started his career with TD Bank before moving onto Assante Wealth Management in 2004. After several years with Assante’s National Accounts office, he eventually joined The McClelland Financial Group in Thornhill.

    Carlo has achieved several industry designations such as the Financial Management Advisor and Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute, regarded as the highest honour and most senior credential in Canadian financial services. He is also a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) professional, the international standard at which Financial Planners are measured. The CFP designation is administered by Financial Planning Standards Council (the foremost authority for the financial planning profession in Canada).

    Carlo has been an active contributor of peer-counselling groups, boosting health awareness on University campuses. A love for organized basketball, Carlo enjoys a vast array of sports. His passion for competition carries over into charity work as he has participated in numerous runs, basketball tournaments and a triathlon to support several charitable organizations. Carlo lives in Stouffville with his wife and three children.

    905-771-5200 ext. 238 | [email protected]

  • Stella is an experienced Office Administrator Professional with over 8 years of experience. She has worked in many different office environments ranging from a Chiropractic Office as the Office Administrator, a Real Estate Office as an Assistant and a Wine Agency as an Administrative Assistant specializing in Accounts Receivable. Stella has now entered the Office Receptionist role at The McClelland Financial Group and has never been more excited and honored to join such a dynamic and hard-working team. She looks forward to enhancing the Client Service experience with her positive personality and providing the highest level of service to each client served with passion and purpose. Stella leads a very busy and active lifestyle and has developed a true passion for fitness, nutrition and cooking and baking healthy recipes. She also enjoys all things fashion-including shopping, as well as Home Décor and decorating trends, travelling and spending time with her family.

    905-771-5200 ext. 221 | [email protected]

  • Michael joined The McClelland Financial Group of Assante Capital Management Ltd. in 2019 as a Strategic Associate. Previously he has worked a wide variety of roles such as Insurance Analyst at TD, Chess Instructor, and Finance Tutor. He graduated in 2016 with a Bachelor of Commerce – Specialized Honours in Finance from York University and as of 2018 has successfully passed all 3 levels of the CFA program on his first try. Michael has a constant thirst for knowledge, is always reading about finance and truly has a passion for the financial service industry.

    Outside of work Michael enjoys reading, playing guitar, hockey, learning new things, and watching old movies.

    905-771-5200 ext. 225 | [email protected]

  • Prior to joining The McClelland Financial Group, Alina worked as a Financial Advisor at Scotiabank where she gained her first experience in the financial industry. She graduated from York University in 2017 with a Bachelor of Arts in Health and Society. Her responsibilities with The McClelland Financial Group include providing support to the management team and performing a variety of tasks related to assisting clients and providing exceptional customer service. She is in the process of completing her Canadian Securities Course and getting officially registered.

    Alina’s interests are finance, travelling, exercising and animals.

    905-771-5200 ext. 228 | [email protected]

  • Mandi has over 5 years of financial industry experience with Assante in various roles with Dealer Operations, Compliance (Registrations) and as an unlicensed assistant to a financial advisor. In addition to her financial industry background, Mandi has operated a successful small business employing approximately 15 people. She is a graduate from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and holds a Certificate of Investment Dealer Compliance. She is currently in the process of completing her CSC and CPH refresher courses in order to obtain her licensing as an investment representative.

    Mandi has been recognized for her exemplary customer service skills and loves working with people. Her personal interests include writing, travel, Muay Thai and meditation.

    905-771-5200 ext. 230 | [email protected]

  • Jessica joined The McClelland Financial Group of Assante Capital Management Ltd. in 2011 as a Service Associate professional. She is adept at processing the rebalancing of client portfolios and applying the basic principles of Accounting.

    Jessica’s responsibilities include organizing and updating the financial statements and transactions for The McClelland Financial Group as well as executing exceptional customer service. Previously Jessica was a successful Sales Consultant for eight years at one of Canada’s leading retail companies, earning the title as “top-sales achiever” during her career there.

    Jessica is fond of fashion, reading and recreational running in her pastime. She has been an active participant of CIBCs’ Run for the Cure.

    905-771-5200 ext. 236 | [email protected]

  • Patrizia is a Registered Representative and has been a member of the team for over 10 years. Patrizia joined The McClelland Financial Group in 2008 after leaving her role as a Senior Group Sales Supervisor for one of Canada’s largest travelling companies. Having successfully earned a Bachelor of Commerce degree from Ryerson University, Patrizia translated her comprehensive background in business and the service industry to her current role for The McClelland Financial Group of Assante Capital Management Ltd.

    Patrizia’s key responsibilities involve issues management, ensuring regulatory compliance standards are met, as well as assisting the Financial Advisors with processing mutual funds, equity transactions and meeting preparations.

    Patrizia is an avid reader, traveller and supporter of cancer research. She is a proud participant for the Terry Fox Run and CIBCs’ Run for the Cure.

    905-771-5200 ext. 227 | [email protected]

  • Amber Mazurkiewicz is a Marketing Manager with many years of experience in corporate sales and marketing. Amber has worked with many Canadian and International brands including; Bell Media, Rogers, Ralph Lauren, Audi, L’Oreal, Porsche, the Swiss Chamber of Commerce, Moet Chandon, KPMG, Deloitte, and Toronto Life among many others. Previously, she worked in progressively senior roles for Scotia Capital Equity Research coordinating the marketing and logistical needs of the division. During her time there, she established a foundation in financial accounting and obtained her Canadian Securities Certification.

    Amber came into marketing from the Toronto film industry where she worked for over a decade as a production coordinator, producer, and art director. Studying film and fine arts in tandem with business studies has given her a strong sense of design and media savvy.

    Amber enjoys skiing, gardening, and the beach. She has two beautiful boys who are her pride and joy.

    905-771-5200 ext. 229 | [email protected]

  • A proactive and personable professional, Michelle strives to exceed the expectations of every client at The McClelland Financial Group. Having started as a Service Associate in 2000, Michelle is currently an Associate Financial Advisor and Business Development Manager at The McClelland Financial Group of Assante Capital Management Ltd. A natural ability with people, knack for building relationships and delivery of top service has allowed Michelle to gain rapport with the extensive client-base. Michelle’s key accomplishments include the completion of the Canadian Securities Course and the successful relationship management with internal and external stakeholders. Previous success has been achieved from her experience as a Customer Service Associate at two of Canada’s Fortune-500 companies.

    Michelle enjoys dancing, reading and travelling on her spare time and is an active participant in CIBC’s Run for the Cure.

    905-771-5200 ext. 223 | [email protected]

  • After completing a Bachelor of Science degree from Toronto’s accredited York University, Socheata used her fondness for Math and Science as a platform to launch her career as the Service Manager at The McClelland Financial Group of Assante Capital Management Ltd.

    Energetic and highly organized, Socheata has successfully completed the Canadian Securities Course which has allowed her to assist the Financial Advisors at The McClelland Financial Group. Socheata is the key point of contact for clients and vendors. She is known for her broad understanding of customer relationship management and upholds a strong rapport and an exceptional track record with all of the clients at The McClelland Financial Group of Assante.

    Socheata enjoys travelling, running, playing volleyball and hot yoga. She is a proud sponsor and participant in the Sporting Life’s 10k Run for Camp OOCH, CIBC’s Run for the Cure.

    905-771-5200 ext. 226 | [email protected]

  • Michael Connon is a financial educator and advisor in the Thornhill area who has been helping thousands of investors, retirees and pre-retirees from companies such as RIM, Imperial Oil, IBM, Royal Bank, and Procter & Gamble, etc. Michael has his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Western as well as the CFP (Certified Financial Planner) designation and is a Senior Financial Advisor and Branch Manager of Assante Capital Management Ltd. Please note that CFP professionals are a body of licensed financial planners that have met the strict standards necessary to attain this designation. Michael is regarded as a local expert in teaching investors how to minimize risk and maximize income.

    905-771-5200 ext. 233 | [email protected]

  • Rob is the founder of The McClelland Financial Group and a Senior Financial Planner and Co-Branch Manager of Assante Capital Management Ltd. Offering a thorough understanding of the diverse needs of professional and retired clients, Rob McClelland holds an Honours degree in Business Administration from the prestigious University of Western Ontario’s Richard Ivey School of Business.

    An expert on how to minimize risk and maximize income during pre and post-retirement stages, Rob has assisted thousands of investors achieve their financial goals over the past 25 years. A prolific speaker and finance educator, Rob has been a featured guest on ‘Report on Business’ and has written for the Canadian-acclaimed newspaper, the Financial Post. Rob has built a solid practice at The McClelland Financial Group based on a reputation for delivering outstanding service and consistent effort.

    Prior to embarking on a successful career in the financial services industry, Rob was a Senior Executive for a successful Canadian retailer. He later earned the title of Vice President of The Equion Group before later transitioning to the role of Senior Financial Advisor, Branch Manager and Vice-President of Assante Capital Management Ltd. Rob has achieved both the RFP and CFP (Certified Financial Planner) designation and is one of the only few hundred Registered Financial Planners in Canada.

    Rob is an avid golfer and loves to travel with his family during his spare time. A love for hockey, Rob has played on a Toronto hockey team for over 10 years and resides in Richmond Hill with his loving wife and 3 children.

    905-771-5200 ext. 234 | [email protected]

  • We have a team of advisors each specializing in varying portfolio sizes. Please let us know the approx. amount of your investable assets to help us to direct you to the advisor that is best suited to you.