Get Involved — Students

Each year, thousands of university students participate in the CFA Institute Research Challenge. These students interact with investment professionals and top firms while obtaining real-world experience in equity analysis, research report writing, and presentation skills.

Benefits of Participating

  • communication icon Networking Opportunities

    Offers a wide variety of networking opportunities

  • person profile icon Learn from Current Professionals

    Gives you direct interaction with financial professionals

  • paper and pen icon Resume Builder

    Enhances your CV/resume

Additionally, the team that wins the final global challenge wins a cash prize for their university.

Am I Eligible to Participate?

You are eligible to participate if:

  • You are a full time student at a participating university
  • You do not hold the CFA charter
  • You have never worked in a role within the core investment management profession, as defined by the CFA Institute Mission
  • You have never participated in the CFA Institute Research Challenge
  • You are eligible under local competition rules

Note that eligibility does not guarantee your participation in the competition.

Learn more about the Research Challenge competition

View the Official Rules (PDF)

How Do I Participate?

It all starts at the local level. Local Hosts made up of approved volunteers and CFA Institute society members organize and judge the local level Research Challenge competitions.

  1. Find out if your university participates by asking your professor or contacting your nearest CFA Institute member society. 

  2. If your university does participate, contact your faculty advisor and ask for details on how to become a team member.

  3. If you learn your university has not participated before, ask a professor to become the faculty advisor.

  4. The faculty advisor should contact the nearest CFA Institute member society for more information.

Contact a local member society

What Can I Expect?

  • The majority of local level participants indicated that they spent
    • 100–150 hours researching their assigned company and assembling their report.
    • 30 or more hours practicing and assembling their presentation.
  • The majority of regional level participants indicated that they spent more than 60 hours preparing for the regional competition.
  • At the local level, you may be responsible for covering the cost of travel and accommodation for all meetings and events. Contact your Local Host for more information.
  • At the regional level, CFA Institute will cover travel and accommodation for the winning team of each eligible competition, plus one sponsored guest (to be chosen by the team). Please see the Official Rules for the terms and conditions of those covered costs.
  • CFA Institute does not cover passport or visa fees.

Review the student resources

View winning presentations from past challenges

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