Monmouth’s Economics and Finance Club visited Wall Street in New York City on Wednesday, April 6, where they toured the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and other historical sites, such as the Bull of Wall Street, Fraunces Tavern & Museum, the 9/11 Memorial, and Federal Reserve building.
Faculty advisor for the club, Professor for the Department of Economics, Finance, and Real Estate, Robert H. Scott, Ph.D., explained that prior to COVID-19 the club would hold this trip once every semester. “The purpose of both the club and trip is to facilitate an environment where students can connect in ways they normally wouldn’t in the classroom,” said Scott.
Besides the club’s semi-annual trip to the NYSE, the club also regularly hosts guest speakers, some of whom are Monmouth alumni. Scott said, “Students can listen to speakers who were once in their shoes and are now professionals…It’s another component to the club that enables students to connect with the University community in a different way.”
Scott, along with the club’s executive board, were responsible for organizing the trip. Christopher Harrigan, senior marketing major, is both Vice President and Marketing Board Member of the club. “I first got involved with the club because I have a passion for understanding the market and educating myself on wealth management,” began Harrigan. Moreover, Harrigan mentioned that as he approached his senior year, he wanted to take on a leadership position. “It was something I had shied away from my first three years at Monmouth, but I have really enjoyed the challenge of the role,” he continued.
Madeleine Ogden, senior finance major and one of the students in attendance, detailed how it felt to visit the NYSE. “It was really interesting to walk on the trading floor as transactions and broadcasts were taking place. We also got to witness the ringing of the closing bell before we left,” said Ogden. She likewise noted the unique positioning of Monmouth, and how the University’s location allows students to travel around the tri-state area with ease. “Because Monmouth is located between two major cities, New York City and Philadelphia, this gives students a lot of opportunities to witness American culture and history on experiential trips like this one.”
In response to the club’s initiative, Dean of the Leon Hess Business School, Raj Devasagayam, Ph.D., said, “The Economics and Finance Club’s most recent visit to Wall Street is yet another example of the Leon Hess Business School faculty and students striving to make the personalized education we promise come alive. I am grateful to Professor Scott for organizing this important learning opportunity and my compliments to all the students that participated.”
Although the club’s foundations are in business, it is open to students of all majors. Scott noted, “It’s about learning the financial markets and what’s happening. A lot of students, regardless of their discipline, are into investing and will have to invest at some point in their life.” He added, “What we do in the classroom is important, but what happens outside the classroom is equally, if not more, important…Clubs are a nice way of bridging that gap between the classroom and the real world.”
Devasagayam agreed, “Raising leaders that have the knowledge and skills to meet the demands of the future of work is paramount to our educational goals. Equally important is the ability of our students to make connections between what they learn in the classroom with the context in which their knowledge and skills are put to test. Experiential education makes such connections a reality.”