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Scholarship Recipient Pursues Entrepreneurial Dream
Amanda Murnane, MBA 10, was drawn to Haas by its expertise in socially responsible and nonprofit businesses, but has discovered she has an entrepreneurial streak, too.
This semester she's taking an entrepreneurship course to investigate two business ideas: helping people volunteer their time to international development programs without having to travel and developing business opportunities for spouses who move with their husbands or wives in the military.
Murnane was fortunate that her husband, who is in the Navy, could be stationed in the Bay Area during her second year at Haas, her top choice. "I love the atmosphere, the interaction among students," she says.
Murnane, the recipient of the John Larson Scholarship, supported by Haas Annual Fund donations, says another major highlight at Haas has been the schoolís Socially Responsible Investment Fund, which has exposed her to the challenges of socially minded stock-picking. Murnane, for instance, thought a solar panel manufacturer would be a good investment, only to discover that solar farms using the panels are blocking the paths of foxes and other migratory animals.
"Whenever you find a company doing good work, thereís always another side to that," she says. "Iíve learned a lot through this process."
Faculty Fellow Seeks Answers to Financial Crisis
Finance Professor Richard Stanton is one of the Haas Schoolís six Bakar Faculty Fellows, named in honor of Barbara and Gerson Bakar, BS 48, who gave $25 million to the school in 2007 to further build and strengthen its faculty.
In his recent research, Stanton has been seeking answers to several timely questions. Among them: how investors should optimally exercise employee stock options, why investors pay a premium for newly issued closed-end funds (even though they know these funds are likely to trade at a discount shortly afterwards), and how to best estimate real estate returns. Stantonís research also has focused on indexed credit default swaps on mortgage- backed securities and their role in the recent financial crisis.
In addition to winning research awards, Stanton has received the Earl F. Cheit Outstanding Teaching Award twice. His teaching combines lectures, cases, problems, and discussion of current events.
"My goal is for students to develop a rigorous understanding of financial theory and how it relates to major events in the market, so that they are ready to handle new situations as they arise in the workplace," Stanton says.