A fresh injection of alumni funding has given the Center for Excellence in Investment Management a new lease on life. The center was founded in 2007 at the dawn of the financial crisis to prepare UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School students for the most challenging jobs in cutting-edge finance.
A generous gift from Jim Jones ’06 (MBA), partner and portfolio manager at William Blair and chair of the center’s advisory board, provided the catalyst for the center to expand its activities.
The support comes as interest in investment management as a career path grows at UNC Kenan-Flagler amid renewed excitement about tapping into rising investor demand for strategies that promise to bring about positive environmental, social and governance change.
“This is the beginning of the second life of the center,” said Ric Colacito, faculty director of the Center for Excellence in Investment Management. “We are at a moment when excitement about investment management is at an all-time high.”
The center offers investment management as an area of emphasis for the Undergraduate Business Program and offers a MBA concentration in Capital Markets and Investments. The center also offers specialized courses, conferences and a pitching competition focusing on investment management.
Looking ahead, the center is focused on improving diversity in the sector by engaging students at a younger age to challenge perceptions that this is a closed industry.
“It is important that our students can see there are people who look like them who have made a great career for themselves in investment management. If you can see it, you can be it,” said Colacito.