A. Kirk Lanterman Investment Center
The university climate was historically considered to be akin to an Ivory tower. Although real world concepts and theories might be discussed, practical applications and experience were typically left for the marketplace to provide. This has been true even for a field as pragmatic as financial investments. It was believed that concrete experience, and hands-on learning, could not effectively take place on campuses. That belief began to change as universities constructed trading rooms where students are exposed to current technology and real-time data -- the essential elements of the modern financial environment where decisions often must be made with lightening quickness. Investment centers, which go by many names including those of trading room or trading floor, offer hands-on training and firsthand exposure to financial concepts such as portfolio construction, risk management, financial engineering, trading strategies, and corporate governance issues.
Faculty members in the Finance Department, recognizing the growing need for this type of facility within the College of Business and Public Administration, sought a means to create it. As has always been the case when the College has an urgent need, an alumnus stepped forward with a solution. The generous gift from A. Kirk Lanterman, will allow UND to remain on the forefront of this exciting transition in investment education.
Although primarily used by finance students, graduate and undergraduate students in all business fields benefit from the presence of the investment center. Class projects and exercises will be integrated into a wide variety of classes, providing a depth and breadth of topic coverage not previously possible. But the benefits don't stop with current students. The business community, through seminars and customized training programs to meet the growing demand for analysts, financial managers, broker/dealers, and global custodians, will benefit as well. Public seminars and training sessions on topics ranging from retirement planning to corporate ethics, will allow a wide range of individuals to benefit from the presence of the center. Summer programs designed for students entering the 10th-12th grades will provide in-depth exposure to financial concepts for a group that must typically wait until they are well into the college programs to experience. In addition to allowing these students to learn about investments and risk management, the program will be designed to develop leadership and teamwork skills, and explore the world of higher education through a campus experience.
Thus, the A. Kirk Lanterman Investment Center will help to extend the reach of the University of North Dakota into the business community, helping with economic development efforts, including the recruitment and training of employees, and into the high schools to convey the excitement and challenges of the modern business world to students and teachers alike. These efforts cannot help but assist in the recruitment of students to the College of Business and Public Administration, and strengthen our relationships with the business community and general public throughout the region.
Design of the Center
Television monitors, and a streaming of ticker tape, allow those passing by the center to feel some of the energy of the confetti environment of a trading pit or stock exchange floor.
Those passing by, or pausing to observe on monitors, and a streaming ticker tape, allow those passing by the center to feel some of the energy of the activity, will not only get a glimpse into the nature of financial markets, but gain an appreciation for the technological innovation and sophistication.
The A. Kirk Lanterman Investment Center is equipped with:
- 17 computers, each with dual flat panel displays, arranged on specialized trading desks.
- Real-time financial market data for some 165,000 equities quoted on over 137 exchanges around the world, plus complete information on fixed income instruments, foreign exchange, and money markets, will be available in the center from Reuters.
- Historical company and price data will be available from sources such as Ibbotson, First Call, I/B/E/S, and DataStream.
- A data wall located inside the center provides summary market data and ticker tape displays. Duplicated outside the room ticker tape and televisions will display current market information, news headlines, and S&P Comstock data.
- Television monitors, both inside and outside the center, provide constant information from sources such as CNNfn, CNBC, Bloomberg, Reuters and other news and information providers.
- These features, along with specialized software such as Crystal Ball, and the OS Financial Trading System, and the use of FAST cases, tutorials, and other training materials, combine to provide a state-of-the-art learning experience for all investment center participants.