Roland George Investments Program
Students in Stetson University's pioneering Roland George Investments Program manage a portfolio made up of approximately $3 million in stocks and bonds in real money. The student-directed program is one of the nation's first and largest, in terms of dollars under management.
Roland George Investment Program students develop their own investment goals, objectives and criteria for managing their portfolio. While many seasoned investors have lost significant sums over the past several years in a volatile market, the program's students have produced outstanding returns.
What's their secret? It's really a combination of investment discipline and Stetson University's basic philosophy of investment education. Students function as an investment management firm would, where a complete investment policy is established and revised as needed.
A Distinctive Program
Our student-managed fund is one of the oldest and is considered to be one of the best student-managed investment programs in the United States. Roland George Investments Program students have won 13 first and 3 second place positions in 5 different categories at two nationally recognized investment competitions since student-managed portfolio competitions began in 2001.
Our faculty includes:
- Giovanni Fernandez, Ph.D., Florida International University; bankruptcy, mutual fund performance and microstructure
- Jennifer Foo, Ph.D., Northeastern University; international financial and banking systems, transitional financial development
- Matthew Hurst, Ph.D., University of Central Florida, real estate and investments as they relate to taxes, executive compensation, mutual funds, real estate investment trusts and corporate governance
- K. C. Ma, Ph.D., CFA, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; financial and quantitative research, portfolio management, investment management, hedge fund management
- James Mallett, Ph.D., Wayne State University; investments, financial planning, the economic environment, socially responsible investing
- Stuart Michelson, Ph.D., University of Kansas; behavioral finance, tax efficiency in retirement accounts, use of alpha to increase portfolio returns, use of technology in education, mutual funds, portfolio risk budgeting, academic honesty
- Chris Tobler, Ph.D., University of Arkansas; corporate governance, acquisition theories, asset valuation, derivative instruments
The Roland George Investments Program is open to select students who, for two semesters, step into the "real world" of portfolio management where they work with real money, make real mistakes, learn from those mistakes and enjoy their victories. Individual security selections are researched using fundamental tools and data services provided by Bloomberg, Bridge and Baseline.
Students must defend their recommendations to other students and an investments committee, dominated by students who function much as the senior strategy group of an investment management firm. Their goal is to earn a return that funds the acquisition of special systems and software for the program, as well as to meet operating expenses.
Students do their research in a state-of-the-art research room. The room includes a real-time ticker and data wall, televisions and computers that allow for cutting-edge research.
Class size is limited to 20 students and is taught by a visiting professor who has had actual experience in money management. Students join the two-class program in their senior year after completing an investments course.
Equity Fund Management
Equity fund management is an applied course in equity analysis and portfolio management. Students set objectives, strategy and selection criteria for the Roland George Growth Fund. Securities are analyzed and proposed to the trustees. Students may participate as trustees, team captains and research assistants.
Fixed Income Management
Fixed income fund management is an applied course in fixed income analysis and advanced topics in portfolio management. Holdings of the Roland George Income Fund are analyzed and changes are prepared based on objectives, criteria and strategy set by the class. Numerous presentations, research papers and meetings are required with an open-ended class schedule.
A limited number of internships are available, as well as faculty help in taking the first steps toward earning Chartered Financial Analyst certification and Series 7 licensure.
Roland George students have gone on to be money managers, security analysts and brokers with leading banks, brokerage houses and money management firms, both nationally and internationally. Students have also gone on to graduate programs in law, finance, mathematical finance, business and biotechnology.
Scholarships and Financial Aid
The Roland George Merit Scholars program offers cash study opportunities for students interested in investments.