May 2018 – Managing The Fund—Drew’s student-run portfolio that invests $30,000 annually—was of great value to Marta Muncharaz Duran C’18, who heads to BlackRock, the world’s largest asset management firm, after graduation.
“The pitches we had to do in The Fund were amazing training. They helped me interview for jobs,” said Muncharaz Duran.
The Fund, launched five years ago with seed money donated by alumni—including Leo Grohowski C’80, CIO of BNY Mellon—enables students to research and analyze sectors and stocks and make Shark Tank-like pitches to their officers and senior analysts before deciding whether to invest. The group’s website features a real-time valuation of its portfolio, comprised of stock in 20 companies, including big names like Verizon, Facebook and Home Depot this year.
Student researchers must understand market conditions and the world events that influence them. The Fund meets twice monthly and is open to undergraduates interested in finance; this year about two dozen participated. “It’s a good way for students to build up their experience,” said Professor Marc Tomljanovich, who advises the group. “It’s helping them see if this is where they want to go in their careers.”
Chatham Studer C’19 served as CIO this year. He joined in his first year to hone his public speaking skills and picked up much more along the way. “I’ve learned a lot about the financial markets,” he said. The experience stoked Studer’s interest in financial planning and analysis and this summer he’ll intern with Prudential Financial.
The Connecticut native is majoring in economics and Spanish and is a forward on the men’s basketball team. For him, Drew provides many avenues for leadership. “What I love about Drew is that it’s so easy to get involved,” said Studer, who also is planning a semester in Barcelona. “I’m going to take advantage of all these opportunities.”
Muncharaz Duran was born in Madrid and attended high school in Paris. She said Drew provided a stellar entrée into Manhattan’s financial sector, where she interned at Apollo Global Management. She joined The Fund after completing Drew’s New York Semester on Wall Street. Recently, a Drew scholarship enabled her travel to London and Brussels for research and interviews for her honors thesis on Brexit.
“I decided to go to Drew because of the amazing opportunities and because it was close to New York City,” she said. “I couldn’t be happier.”