Producing the Next Wall Street Whiz

Stephanie Thara



Seeing scrolling ticker tapes rapidly changing as it reports real-time financial activity, watching massive screens displaying up-to-the-moment financial news, managing investment databases and mock financial portfolios are only some of the activities CSU students get to experience that allow them to refine and enhance their skills as business and finance professionals.

By encouraging hands-on learning with the use of simulation labs and connecting students with successful industry leaders during guest speaker events, the CSU is arming students with the skills and knowledge needed to become proficient in any business endeavor. The wide array of business degree options available at CSU campuses allows scholars to pursue careers in everything from financial management and market research to accounting and entrepreneurship.

CSU Dominguez Hills' Financial Market Trading and Business Simulation Lab CSU Dominguez Hills recently opened its new Financial Market Trading and Business Simulation Lab to provide students with the opportunity to practice with real market data from the Dow Jones Industrial Average, energy, commodities and bonds, as well as manage mock financial portfolios. Students will also be able to develop management skills in human resources, and business, finance and hospitality revenue management using industry-standard software.

Fresno State will be opening a stock trading room this fall where students can gather research investment opportunities, make live trades on the exchange, collect real-time investment data and become familiar with the software used in actual trading rooms. Similarly, the Wells Fargo Financial Markets Lab at San Diego State provides students access to real-time data and analysis of historical data which support the creation and management of student-run investment funds. At Cal State Long Beach, students are exposed to career-enhancing opportunities within the investments industry through hands-on training in securities analysis and a management of a $100,000 portfolio which is funded by CSULB’s Department of Finance.

In addition to giving business scholars an advantage over their peers by immersing them in situations that are closely related to real-world scenes, CSU campuses host guest speakers that allow students to network with business leaders who have excelled in their profession and have made an impact throughout the world.

CSU Bakersfield launched a Distinguished Speaker Series in 2013 to introduce the University and local community to individuals who have stepped outside the box and become visionaries and innovators in their field. Two speakers will be hosted each year, and attendees will be able to hear about their journey to success and speak to them about their achievements. The Speaker Series kicked off last November with Elon Musk, CEO and Chief Designer of SpaceX and Tesla Motors, and will host its second speaker—J. Patrick Doyle, CEO of Domino’s Pizza—on May 14.

California State Controller John Chiang at Cal State. L.A.Cal State L.A. also recently debuted a Civic Leadership Speaker Series where California State Controller John Chiang discussed opportunities on how to strengthen financial leadership across California’s diverse industries. Attendees were able to learn tips and tools on how to handle pension funds, become a leader in the financial industry and how to positively empower disadvantaged populations through financial literacy.