Although they didn’t advance in this year’s investment research competition, Heidelberg students who participated in the challenge believe the experience has helped prepare them for their job searches and careers.
The business students – Lauren Ash, Erica Huffman, Zach Myers, Dorion Kempf – and their advisor and professor, Dr. John Cook traveled to Western Michigan University Feb. 1 for the annual CFA Institute Global Investment Research Challenge. While there, they competed against primarily graduate students from the likes of the University of Toledo, BGSU, Eastern Michigan, Western Michigan, Grand Valley State, Michigan Technical Institute and the University of Michigan-Dearborn, which advanced to the next level of competition.
The students spent the fall semester in their BAE 290 Special Topics class, titled Security Analysis and Evaluation, researching and preparing for the competition. Their research included a trip to Michigan to visit the headquarters of Kellogg in Battle Creek, Mich., the company analyzed by each of the teams for the competition.
Outside of class, John was allowed only 10 hours with the team, so they were on their own for much of their prep.
“We met a lot outside of class and worked on the fundamentals of analysis, both on research and preparing our paper and Power Point for the competition,” Zach said.
On the day of the competition, they were limited to a 10-minute presentation and 10 minutes of Q&A with a three-judge panel.
“It was gratifying and rewarding to take everything we learned in class and apply it to a real-world scenario,” Dorion said.
Although the competition represents the end of the road for this hard-working ‘Berg team, John is proud of their effort.
“Their presentation was very good. They were very strong in the Q&A, where they really had to think on their feet. They were not intimidated at all. I really thought they did an admirable job,” he said. “They have nothing to hang their heads about.”
Zach believes the rigorous Q&A will help as the students face job interviews. “If we can handle questions from three financial analysts, that will really help us when we apply for jobs,” he said.
The team will re-create their presentation as part of the Student Research Conference on Feb. 20.