Friday News Roundup – Wharton Opens FinTech Center, Northeastern Students Give Back, and More

Wharton FinTech

Let’s take a look at some of the biggest stories from this week, including the all new Wharton FinTech Center.

Giving Day at D’Amore-McKimNortheastern University News

On April 11, 2019, Northeastern University will host its Annual Giving Day: a 24 hour event that will support, among other NU endeavors, expansion of D’Amore-McKim‘s programs.

“Giving Day is a great way of getting our entire D’Amore-McKim community to come together to support what makes us remarkable,”  Deborah Magnezy, Assistant Dean of Development at D’Amore-McKim, says of the event.

Among the funds to which donors can contribute are a FinTech Initiative, which engages students with the latest in technological advances within the financial services community; the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Fund, which will help create co-ops for students in this field; a Global Learning Fund, and the Digital, Analytics, Technology, and Automation (DATA) Initiative Fund.

Giving Day will feature speakers and activities for alumni, students, faculty and all others who support the school. To learn more about Giving Day, click here.

Wharton Announces Stevens Center for Innovation in FinanceWharton News

University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business announced the establishment of the Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance in order to focus on tech innovation across the industry.

Named for Ross Stevens, alum and founder of Stone Ridge Holdings Group, the center will hold its inaugural event on April 3. FinTech leaders such as Wharton alum Jackie Reses, head of Square Capital, and David Klein, CEO of CommonBond, will appear at the event. The Stevens Center will be led by David Musto, Ronald O. Perelman Professor in Finance at Wharton.

According to Penn president Amy Gutmann, “The mission of the Stevens Center is precisely this: to ensure that innovations in finance make the greatest positive contributions to businesses and communities across the globe. The Stevens Center will catalyze Penn’s world-leading research and industry engagement and enrich the opportunities available for our outstanding students.”

The center will welcome business leaders to campus, and will offer students curriculum in FinTech research. It will also offer engagement with Wharton’s various FinTech clubs to open new career pathways for interested students. Along with courses, the center will offer mentorship opportunities and research projects, which will translate into real world applications.

You can learn more about the new Wharton FinTech Stevens Center here.

Gies Students Honored for Southside StartupGies College of Business News

Jordan Buckner and Isaac Lozano, two University of Illinois Gies College of Business MBAs, have brought their b-school knowledge to bear in the formation of their Chicago company Tea Squares, and have also created great social impact within the South Side community.

Tea Squares, which are snacks infused with energy enhancing teas, are selling in hundreds of retail stores, including Whole Foods, Jewel, and Mariano’s. In addition, the company’s success has earned the partners acknowledgement by Forbes for its annual 30 Under 30 list. Buckner says of the Forbes mention, “It was awesome to be recognized for creating a great-tasting snack to help people achieve success during their day and also be recognized for our social mission, which is a critical piece [of our business plan]… it was very humbling to be honored in that way.”

Image result for teasquares whole food

TeaSquares founders and Gies alumni Jordan Buckner, left, and Isaac Lozano, seen in their recent Chicago Tribune feature.

Tea Squares offers fellowships via partnerships with community revitalization groups. Through this, Buckner and Lozano find candidates with high-potential for sales, marketing, or production roles. The end goal of the fellowship is to train candidates to pursue their own ventures, thus strengthening the economy of the South Side.

For more on Buckner, Lozano, and Tea Squares, click here.

Stern Announces Major Research on Sustainable Products MarketNYU Stern School of Business News

The Center for Sustainable Business at NYU’s Stern School of Business recently released new findings from its Sustainable Share Index, an analysis of consumer’s purchases of products and business marketed as sustainable.

Over half of the growth in sales of consumer packaged goods since 2013 has been comprised of products with ‘environmentally friendly’ attributes. These items comprised 16.6 percent of consumer sales in 2018. Over the five year period, sustainability-marketed products had an increase in sales of 29 percent, or $114 billion. This may grow to $140 billion by 2024.

NYU Stern professor and founding director of Stern’s Center for Sustainable Business Tensie Whalen says:

“Results from this research reinforce the idea that embracing sustainability leads to better business results. We are excited to launch the Sustainable Share Index and look forward to continuing our research in the years to come.”

Other experts on sustainable business were quick to remark on this “eye opening” study. “Companies should take notice—the benefits of sustainability cannot be ignored … In fact, this groundbreaking research shows the significant impact that sustainable products have on overall category growth.” notes Randi Kronthal-Sacco, senior scholar in Marketing and Corporate Outreach from the Stern’s Sustainable Business Center.

For more on the Sustainable Share Index and the recent research, click here.

Berkeley Haas Hosts 23rd Annual Women in Leadership ConferenceBerkeley Haas News

The University of California’s Berkeley Haas School of Business‘ Women in Leadership Conference takes place this weekend, March 16, 2019.

A team comprised of Berkeley Haas MBAs has worked for months to produce the 23rd annual event, which is the school’s longest running conference. With over 300 attendees expected to attend and 20 speakers on various issues affecting women across the world, WIL’s 2019 theme will be “Your Stories, Your Growth”.

Dean Ann Harrison will open the event with a welcome address. A keynote speech, panel discussions, and breakout sessions are to follow. Erin Casale, MBA 19 and WIL conference team member says of this year’s theme, “Stories inspire change, and that’s our ultimate collective goal … We recognize that everyone attending this conference brings something to the table.”

The WIL leadership team

Members of the 2019 Women in Leadership Conference at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business / Photo via

Other speakers will be Sandra Lopez, VP at Intel Sports; Tyi McRay, interim director of diversity at Airbnb; Elena Gomez, CFO of Zendesk, and Brandi Pearce, lecturer in the Management of Organizations at Berkeley Haas.

Casale notes that the goal for the conference is to plant the seeds for change for those who attend.

“For us, it will be a win if attendees come away with a clear next step of what they can do to set themselves and their peers on a better path toward equity and inclusion … We want people to feel equipped for change and inspired to start it.”

Click here for more on this year’s conference.

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About the Author

Maggie Boccella

Maggie Boccella, a lifelong resident of Philadelphia, is a freelance writer, artist and photographer. She has consulted on various film and multimedia projects, and she also serves as a juror for the city's annual LGBTQIA Film Festival.

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