In response to the growth and success of Ashland University’s Eagle Investment Group, the University’s Investment Committee of the Board of Trustees has granted a third fund for the selected finance majors to manage and alumni and friends have the opportunity to donate to this fund.
“This third fund will be different from the other two because initially we will open it up to alumni and friends as a new vehicle for donations,” explained Dr. Thomas Harvey, associate professor of finance and director of the Eagle Investment Group. “The Eagle Investment Group will receive 2.5 percent of the asset value of this fund every year, and we plan to use that to further enhance the educational experiences of the students.”
Harvey explained that this money could be used to purchase to additional “trading” software or pay for Wall Street executives and scholars to visit campus to meet with Eagle Investment Group students.
Students in Ashland’s Eagle Investment Group were first offered the chance to gain practical experience by managing the University’s investments in January of 2000 and have managed a portion of the University’s investment portfolio ever since.
In 2008, the Board approved a second fund of $370,000 to add to the initial investment fund of $250,000, and this third fund, named Eagle Financial Fund, will provide an additional $250,000 for the Eagle Investment Group to manage.
“The number of finance majors has increased and the interest in becoming part of this group has also grown to the point where we felt we needed to add more sophistication to the curriculum in form of alternative investments,” he said. “Twelve years ago, we had 12 finance majors. Now, we have 115. I think the success of our Eagle program is the primary reason for the growth in this major.”
Harvey said the fund managed by the finance students has consistently outperformed the market. “Over the past five years, the fund showed an 11.93 percent gain, while the Standard and Poor’s 500 showed a growth rate of 16.96 percent and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 12.25 percent,” he said.
Each spring, Harvey and the Eagle Investment Group members spend a week in New York City to acquaint the students with the financial capital of the world. They visit the New York Stock Exchange and meet with executives of the Group’s Corporate Partners.
“We want our students to be able to walk down Wall Street, as well as Main Street, with anyone,” Harvey said. “The New York trip helps them to realize that.”