(WARRENSBURG, Mo.) — A realistic trading floor is in the works at the University of Central Missouri thanks to a gift from a 1952 alumnus.
In recognition of Donn G. Forbes’ gift, the UCM board of governors recently approved naming the room, the Donn G. Forbes Center for Financial Services.
“This learning space will afford generations of students the opportunity for engaged learning,” said Marvin “Bunky” Wright, board of governors president, in a written statement. “It is alumni like Mr. Forbes who care deeply about our students who make their dreams a reality.”
Forbes’ gift is the second largest ever made to the Harmon College of Business and Professional Studies. The amount has not been disclosed. It includes both an immediate “bricks and mortar” gift along with a planned gift to support future needs within the college. The gift will be used to construct a realistic trading floor, similar to the New York Stock Exchange, in the northeast area of the Ward Edwards Building atrium. It will become the hub for the activities of a group of finance students trading stock and researching financial markets. The new area will be ready by August.
“I provided the gift because I have a passion and long-time interest in personal investing, and am happy to still be researching and making investment decisions the ‘old fashion way.’ I worked hard for my degree and appreciate the education I received,” Forbes said in a news release.
Forbes graduated from UCM with a Bachelor of Science in business administration. After graduation, he enlisted and served in the Coast Guard. His professional career with International Paper Company spanned more than 30 years in which he worked in sales and marketing. He now lives in Vancouver, Wash.
“Thanks to the UCM Foundation and Mr. Forbes’ generosity and forward-thinking, this hands-on experience in security analysis and portfolio management will provide our undergraduate and graduate students a unique advantage in one of the most competitive fields in the world,” said José Mercado, chair of the department of economics, finance and marketing.
The Red Investment Management group at UCM, formerly the Student Management Investment Fund, enrolled its first class of undergraduate and graduate students in fall 2013. For the students to gain realistic experience, the UCM Foundation allocated a $500,000 portfolio for them to perform detailed analysis of potential investments, security selection and performance. So far, the students have acquired more than $50,000 through investments, an amount that will generate additional dollars for UCM scholarships and other student-centered programs.