School of Business Team Makes 2012 CFA Institute Research Challenge® Final Four

School of Business students compete in the CFA Institute Research Challenge.

The New York Society of Security Analysts (NYSSA) announced that Montclair State University’s School of Business team has won a coveted spot as one of the final four teams in this year’s New York Regional Final of the CFA Institute Research Challenge®.

“I am honored and proud to work with these intelligent and dedicated students,” says Economics and Finance Professor Susana Yu, who co-advises the team along with Associate Professor Herman Sintim.

School of Business team members Francesco Colombo, Stefan Genzor, Drew Heimlich, Michael Polifonte, and Parth Shah bested more than 20 other teams from top area business schools with their written report and presentation on MICROS Systems, Inc, the world’s leading developer of enterprise applications servicing the hospitality and specialty retail industries.

Sponsored by CFA Institute, the Research Challenge is an educational initiative designed to familiarize the next generation of financial analysts with best practices in research. Noted industry professionals teach students how to research and report on a publicly-traded company.

Once the challenge kicked off last fall, the group got to work – even calling MICROS CEO Tom Giannopolous with questions. “We’ve easily contributed over 100 hours each to the Challenge,” says senior business administration major Colombo. “ We dedicated our winter break to this project and our dedication paid off.”

The teams compete by presenting their recommendations and findings to senior Wall Street executives. “As a team we recommended MICROS Systems as a ‘speculative buy,’” says senior Shah.

On Thursday, February 16, the School of Business team will face off against students from Dartmouth College, Fairfield University, and Rutgers University before a panel of expert judges at the NYSSA Conference Center in Times Square. The winning team will advance to the Global Final in Manhattan on April 11, 2012.
“The group has been working diligently since they heard the news,” says Yu. “They spent all of last weekend in school setting up their winning strategy, preparing their official responses to the reviewers’ comments, revising their power-slides, and rehearsing their speeches.”

For team members, the experience has been both educationally and personally
rewarding. First year MBA student Genzor confidently sums it up, “It’s a great experience, which I expect will go all the way through to the world finals.”