With the slumping economy and erratic stock market, what better time to get advice from one of the world’s wealthiest investors?
Twenty College of Management students will have this opportunity on Nov. 11 when they travel to Omaha, Neb., to meet with Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway.
“I am very excited to meet Warren Buffet because we have spent a great deal of time in class discussing and reading about his investment strategies,” said Angela Pasquarello, a senior business major with dual concentrations in accounting and corporate finance. “Also his outlook on life has been a major influence on me. He is so passionate about what he does and he expresses this by introducing students, such as me, to his world of investing. He is calm and collected, optimistic and always tells it like it really is.”
The students who are meeting Buffett take the course “Portfolio and Security Analysis” taught by Associate Prof. Ravi Jain. For the past four years, Jain’s students have managed Lowell’s Student Management Fund, one of four funds that was set up by the UMass Foundation on the Amherst, Boston, Dartmouth and Lowell campuses. The UMass Lowell fund has won the intercampus competition the first three years using Buffett’s investing philosophy. The current market value of the fund is $41,500, which is a 40 percent gain on the original investment of $29,250.
“The students are very excited about this opportunity to meet Buffett in person, ask questions and better understand investing,” said Jain. “I have been sending our fund performance to Mr. Buffett’s office for the last few years, requesting that we be included in one of the student visits. This year we have our chance.”
Along with eight other universities, UMass Lowell students will participate in a question-and-answer session followed by lunch with Buffett. They will also visit one or two of his subsidiaries based in Omaha.
“No other class gives you the opportunity to use real money to invest,” said Pasquarello, who is the president of the Student-Managed Fund as well as president of the Finance Society. She is responsible for reporting to alumni about the visit with Buffett.
Students are paying $50 each for travel expenses and the remainder is being paid by the contributions of UMass Lowell alumni.
“We are so thankful for our alumni and want to make sure that they know that. Some students may have not been able to experience this opportunity if it wasn't for their generous contributions,” said Pasquarello.