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How to manage $1.5 million

Finance program at JMSB provides students with the ultimate hands-on learning experience
September 20, 2013
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By Yuri Mytko

KWPMP student Julian Tsang presents the Class of 2013 fund’s results to members of the business community. KWPMP student Julian Tsang presents the Class of 2013 fund’s results to members of the business community. Photo by Concordia University

Ever wondered what to do with a cool million? Join the Kenneth Woods Portfolio Management Program (KWPMP) information sessions on October 16, 17 and 21, and you could find out.

Guided by a team of senior investment management and management consulting professionals from the business community, KWPMP students manage a $1.5 million fund.

“When our students are measured, they stand up to real-world criteria,” says Reena Atanasiadis. The senior lecturer in the Department of Finance at the John Molson School of Business (JMSB) was named program director in March.

According to Atanasiadis, the KWPMP takes learners outside their comfort zone and compels them to reflect on their subject matter in a way that isn’t possible in the classroom. “Our students are measured just like investment professionals in the real world. Their stock and bond picks are compared to global market performance.”

Six to 10 students are chosen each January to join the KWPMP for a two-year period. First-year students are called “Research Associates”; they acquire the basic skills of investment management and assist the second-year students, who are the “Fund Managers.”

KWPMP students have outperformed their benchmark in seven out of the last 10 years.

“The students need to create value over and above passive market returns by analyzing and choosing investments that will outperform,” says Atanasiadis. “Nothing says ‘rooted in the real world’ like having your stock and bond picks compared to global market performance.”

Established by Kenneth Woods, MBA 75, with an initial investment of $1 million, the program aims to provide a select group of undergraduate finance students with hands-on training in investment management. Woods created the program in 2000 to honour the late Professor Calvin C. Potter, a much admired member of Concordia’s Department of Finance.

In an increasingly diversified business-school market, the program exemplifies Concordia’s commitment to experiential learning. It provides students with a dynamic learning environment, steeped in relevance: “learning through doing.”

“Offering programs that are well-grounded in practice and theory is very important for us,” says JMSB Dean Steve Harvey. “We have a number of study programs that meet the needs of local businesses, enabling students to receive training that prepares them for the job market.”

Find out more about the Kenneth Woods Portfolio Management Program information sessions in October. 

 



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