For Immediate Release — November 15, 2004



Competitors Second to Rutgers by Slim Margin

GENESEO, N.Y. and NEW YORK CITY — A student team from the State University of New York at Geneseo has placed second in a competition held last week for undergraduate business, finance and economics students sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The competition was held in New York City, and 20 colleges and universities from across the northeast participated.

The College Fed Challenge is designed to help undergraduates become more knowledgeable about the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the decision-making process of the Federal Open Market Committee, the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy-setting group.

In this competition for undergraduate business, finance and economics students, each team made a 20-minute presentation in which it analyzed current economic conditions and recommended an appropriate Fed policy stance. The judging panel, made up of Wall Street economists and senior New York Fed officials, then engaged the team in a 15-minute question-and-answer session after which the performance was scored.

The winners of the 2004 College Fed Challenge are: Rutgers, first place; SUNY Geneseo, second place; Boston College, third place; SUNY Binghamton, honorable mention. A Geneseo team finished third last year in the college’s first time ever competing in the Challenge.

Participating team members from SUNY Geneseo were Mark Melcher of Delmar, N.Y., Tim Jones of Stanfordville, N.Y., Carolyn Miller of Loudonville, N.Y., Kristen Walker of Williamsville, N.Y., Sam Chung of New Hyde Park, N.Y., Rob Boyd of Fairport, N.Y., and Will Evans of Stanley, N.Y. All are economics students in Geneseo’s Jones School of Business.

As a result of its placement Geneseo won a total of $11,000 from the Moody’s Foundation, representing $3,500 for the students and $7,500 for the school.

Léonie Stone of Dansville, N.Y. and Chris Annala of Rochester, N.Y., both economics professors at Geneseo, were advisors to the team. Stone traveled with the team to New York for the competition. Faculty members who sat in on practice presentations included Mike Schinski of Geneseo, N.Y., Nader Asgary of Rochester, N.Y., and Anthony Gu of Geneseo, N.Y.

"The level of competition in the Fed Challenge is incredibly high and increasing every year," said Stone, assistant professor of economics in the Jones School of Business at SUNY Geneseo. "It’s a remarkable achievement to even place as one of the four finalists. We are extremely proud of our exceptional students."

Jones School of Business Advisory Council member Kent Gardner, director of Economic Analysis at the Center for Governmental Research in Rochester, also helped the team prepare for the competition, along with Brian Imrich, a Geneseo alumnus who was on last year’s team. Additional assistance was provided by Richard Dietz of the Federal Reserve Bank of Buffalo and by Robert Boyd, a vice president with HSBC bank in Rochester.

Students on the 20 participating teams were judged based on five criteria: knowledge about the Federal Reserve’s role in developing and implementing monetary policy; responses to judges’ questions; presentation skills; quality of research and analysis; and evidence of teamwork and cooperation.

According to competition organizers, the College Fed Challenge is intended to promote greater understanding of the Federal Reserve’s role in developing and implementing monetary policy; greater interest in economics and finance as a subject for advanced study and as the basis for a career; research, presentation, critical thinking and cooperation skills; and a closer relationship between colleges and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

"This is a tremendous accomplishment and we are extremely proud of the students on our Fed Reserve competition team," said Mary Ellen Zuckerman, dean of the Jones School. "The team and their faculty advisors have worked extremely hard all semester and their great performance against some tough competition shows that this work paid off. I’m sure this entire experience is one the students will remember their entire lives!"

College teams participating in this year’s competition were from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts. The teams were: Barnard/Columbia, Bloomfield, Boston College, Centenary, Cornell, Fairfield, Fordham, Marist, Niagara, Northeastern, Nyack, NYU-Stern, Pace, Queensborough, Rutgers, Sacred Heart, St. Francis, Seton Hall, SUNY Binghamton and SUNY Geneseo.

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