FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (9/03)
Centenary's Frost School
of Business Goes Wireless, State-of-art
There are no more chalkboards or traditional lectures in this business classroom where faculty instruct with “smartboards” and students work in a wireless laptop environment. Students have access to powerful databases and analytic software such as the S&P 500 Research Insight Database, and the Financial Trading System. To complement the new trading room technology, a Student-Managed Investment Fund, using real dollars from a $100,000 gift to the Frost School of Business, will begin this fall, as will the state-of-the-art renovation of the remainder of classroom space in the School of Business
SHREVEPORT, LA—In the classrooms of Centenary’s Frost School of Business, traditional lectures and chalkboards have given way to interactive discussions, the use of wireless laptop computers to access cutting-edge software and real-time data, “smartboards” for data presentation and live satellite feeds from around the world.
With the assistance of three Louisiana Board of Regents grants totaling over $200,000 and the generosity of Centenary alumni, all School of Business classroom space is headed for a wireless, state-of-the-art environment that addresses today’s rapidly changing business needs. Phase I of the Frost School’s plan was completed this past year with the addition of a securities markets trading room that doubles as a “smart” classroom for finance and accounting coursework. In addition, a new multimedia center with 12 workstations is now housed off the lobby of the School of Business. Construction begins this fall on an economics “smart” classroom.
The new wireless network of laptops, rich databases and leading analytic software provides a premier learning experience for all business majors, with upper-level finance and accounting students particularly benefitting. The trading room offers hands-on exposure to portfolio construction, risk management and financial engineering. The facility will also prepare the finance majors before they manage the $100,000 of real money in the Student-Managed Investment Fund. The trading room is an outstanding complement to the Student Managed Investment Fund that will be launched this fall, said Dr. Barbara Davis, director of the fund.
“This is one of only a handful of facilities nationwide with the capability of giving students the first-hand knowledge of a live trading floor,” said Dr. Christopher Martin, dean of the Frost School of Business, about the trading room/smart classroom. “It is a formidable resource for Centenary business students who will have experience with the advanced tools they will be using in their careers. It’s not just a matter of having technology, but using it so that our students are advantaged as they leave Centenary. The new facilities go far in helping us to reach our goal of technology integration throughout the business curriculum.”
The students’ ability to access and download datasets and literature, analyze financial models, conduct research and predict outcomes allows professors and students to analyze information jointly and to form hypotheses in a rapidly changing financial environment. Through the new teaching laboratories, Martin said, students will work with faculty in class and outside of class to access data and to explore ideas and issues that would not be possible in a normal classroom. Already, one student-faculty team has presented research findings from the datasets at a national conference in Las Vegas. “We look forward to the continued integration of information technology into our curriculum,” Martin said, “and to providing Centenary business students with the tools needed in today’s business world.”
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