By Erin Shanahan
This semester, Fordham’s chapter of Smart Woman Securities will have the opportunity to send members on a once in a lifetime trip to meet Warren Buffett. Last year, the chapter sent eleven of its members on this unique trip.
In addition, the organization anticipates a busy semester of weekly speakers and off-campus trips. The organization’s goals, policies and events, as well as its new executive board, was discussed at its first meeting of the spring semester, which took place on Wednesday, Jan. 21.
Smart Woman Securities is a national organization with the goal of educating undergraduate women in personal finance and investing. With the mentorship of a very active SWS alumnae, the club provides its members with the tools necessary to compete in the world of finance. The Fordham University chapter was founded in 2009 and it meets every week to hear different speakers share valuable information regarding the business world.
“This spring, we focus on career exploration and give members the opportunity to match their skills and talents with career choices through a dynamic speaker series, exclusive corporate visits and valuable SWS National resources,” Noelle Brennan, GSB ’16 and chief executive officer of Smart Woman Securities, commented after the first SWS meeting of the spring semester. In addition to Brennan, this year’s executive board consists of Abby Harman, GSB ’16, as chief development officer, Leona Lam, GSB ’16, as chief investment officer, Erika Schwartz, GSB ’17, as chief operating officer, Laura Nevins, GSB ’17, as chief marketing officer, Lauren Kelly, GSB ’17, as Jr. Development Officer, and Rose LoTempio, GSB ’18, as the freshman liaison.
“As CEO,” Brennan commented, “I hope to provide our members with a club experience that brings about personal growth, intellectual curiosity and confidence when it comes to making valuable connections and demonstrating ability.”
The club will have a series of speakers and corporate visits. The first event, a panel with Ernst & Young, will occur Wednesday, Jan. 28. In addition, this semester the club will host speakers from J.P. Morgan, Barclays and Bank of America, as will organize a trip to the Federal Reserve. Also, the Women in Leadership Conference will be held on April 10 at Rose Hill. “The Women in Leadership Conference is Fordham SWS’s annual capstone event where we invite respected speakers from prestigious firms along with recruiters to speak and network with our students,” Brennan said.
Additionally, SWS as a national organization will be taking applications from the Fordham chapter to have the opportunity to meet with Warren Buffett.
“The Warren Buffett Trip, reserved for the most committed of our members, is an exciting opportunity where members from SWS chapters nationwide are selected to take part in a trip to Omaha and meet Mr. Buffett himself, ask him question, and visit Berkshire companies.” Brennan said. “This past spring, Fordham SWS had the highest representation on the trip of every SWS chapter, with 11 members in attendance.”
Fordham’s chapter of SWS believes that they have excelled for several reasons.
“Unlike other chapters, we are able to draw in professionals to speak with students at our seminars on a weekly basis as well as organize a student-run conference with successful and respected professionals annually,” Brennan said. “Additionally, we organize corporate visits and often include other chapters in these events.”
Also, because of the Gabelli School of Business, the club enjoys a large, passionate membership support.
“I have already taken away so much from this club and it has integrated very well into my academic work at Gabelli,” Theresa Fazio, GSB ’18, shares. “When I start taking finance classes, I will already have a basic understanding of how to give a stock pitch and much more thanks to this great organization.”