“What course of action would YOU recommend when confronted with a challenging and complicated business issue without clear-cut solutions?”
That is the question that more than 40 finance students from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business were recently asked to answer and defend when presented with a real-life situation while visiting the CFA Institute, a global association of investment professionals, headquarters in Charlottesville, Virginia. The students were led by David Kass, clinical professor of finance and faculty champion of the sophomore Finance Fellows program. The undergraduates were joined by several students in the Masters of Science in Finance program. The issue-solving challenge was presented by Glenn Doggett, CFA’s director of professional standards.
When the students visited the CFA on April 6, 2018, they received a brief overview of the global association, whose mission is to set “the highest standards of ethics, education and professional excellence in the industry.” The CFA has close to 150,000 members globally and is the world’s largest association of investment professionals.
“The members of the CFA Institute that we met with urged us to think organically, just as we would have to in a real-life setting. There are many resources available for students who want to sit for the exam and becoming CFA-certified would open many doors in my career path down the line,” said Ashley Kim ’19, a junior finance major.
Keith Cotter ’19, a junior majoring in finance and accounting, added, "The CFA trip was interesting, as we learned more about the exam and ethics in finance."
Finance major Justin Breitenbach said, “I had a great time during my visit to the CFA Institute with Professor Kass and my classmates. While there, we were exposed to the CFA examination process and had a long discussion about ethical decision making in financial advising. A big thank you to all of the CFA Institute professionals and to Professor Kass for making the trip possible!”
Watch & Learn: Berkshire Hathaway Annual Shareholders Meeting
On Saturday, May 5, 2018, students, faculty and staff are invited to a “Watch & Learn” session in 1570 Van Munching Hall, when Kass will live-stream the entire Berkshire Hathaway Annual Shareholders Meeting. Rather than joining the crowd of thousands in Omaha, Nebraska, Kass will provide immediate commentary and insight of the on-stage discussions based on his personal relationship with Berkshire chairman and CEO Warren Buffett. Kass has frequently accompanied MBA and UG students on trips to Omaha for private meetings with Buffett, has led several Finance Fellows trips to attend Berkshire Hathaway’s annual shareholder meeting, maintains a much-followed finance blog, and currently teaches Advanced Financial Management and Business Finance.
If you are interested in attending the event, please RSVP online.
Participants may stop by at any time during the day. Light breakfast and a lunch will be provided.
Interested in learning more about the Smith Fellows Programs?
Undergraduate Program Assistant and Finance Fellow Ashley Kim contributed to this article.