April 23, 2018, BY Beth Kaszuba

Bucknell students look out over the New York Stock Exchange trading floor.
Emily Gagis '18 and fellow students in Bucknell's Student Managed Investment Fund course look out over New York Stock Exchange trading floor. Photo by Emily Paine, Communications

Students in Bucknell's Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) course are familiar with the pressure of managing about $2 million of the University's endowment in a volatile marketplace.

Building upon that real-life experience, a select group of SMIF students recently presented their investment strategies for the academic year to Bucknell alumni working in New York City.

The annual trip, coordinated by the Kenneth W. Freeman College of Management, also provided students with alumni-hosted visits to financial management firms Goldman Sachs and Baron Capital Management, as well as the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Students also attended a networking event with nearly 150 participants, including alumni and parents working as investment analysts, financial planners, consultants and brokers.

Cole Davis '18 discusses SMIF students' management of part of Bucknell's endowment in a presentation to alumni and others. Photo by Emily Paine, Communications

"The highlight of the trip was the opportunity to present our hard work to alumni, family and friends of the SMIF program," said Cole Davis '18, who majors in chemical engineering and management for engineers. "It was a huge honor to be chosen to represent our class and tell our story of successful asset management over the course of the last year."

Computer engineering major Uttam Kumaran '18, who also participated in the presentation, said being part of the SMIF course has allowed him to "pursue my passion for finance in a true liberal arts fashion."

"The course and the trip have been the most mentally stimulating set of experiences I've had during my time at Bucknell," he added.

Emily Gagis '18, an accounting & financial management major who was also part of the presentation team, appreciated the opportunity to visit Wall Street and meet accomplished alumni in a variety of careers.

"We watched the opening bell and a company celebrate their initial public offering," she said. "It was a great way to see how strong management can lead to success, culminating in a company having an IPO. And being able to network with successful alumni and others is a valuable skill I'll be able to use throughout my career."

Davis added that he was also grateful for the significant alumni support for the event. "After this trip, I feel strongly about the wide, but more importantly, deep network that we share at Bucknell," he said. "I hope to one day give back to the program."

Kumaran agreed, noting, "The trip highlighted the generosity of alumni, and reminded me of the tightly knit community we are part of, both as students and future alumni of Bucknell."