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Finance lab expands at USF's Sarasota-Manatee campus

  • By Louis Llovio
  • | 1:45 p.m. May 28, 2024
  • | 2 Free Articles Remaining!
The addition of new Bloomberg Terminals is part of expansion at a finance lab at USF's Sarasota campus.
The addition of new Bloomberg Terminals is part of expansion at a finance lab at USF's Sarasota campus.
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The finance lab at the University of South Florida’s Sarasota-Manatee campus is getting an upgrade this summer as the school prepares to open a second lab in Tampa.

The upgrade in Sarasota will include adding 12 new Bloomberg Terminals and a new scrolling stock ticker among other improvements.

The terminals are a Wall Street mainstay used by investors — and others — to access data and news from global financial markets and to place trades.

USF says expanding the lab’s offerings will allow faculty to incorporate the data into their financing and investing courses.

Students, the university says, will also be able to use the new machines to prepare for investment competitions against classmates and students at other universities. These competitions “measure their ability to analyze financial conditions and provide investment advice — skills that prepare them for careers on Wall Street and elsewhere in the financial services industry.”

“We will show them how to do stock analysis and how to form a portfolio,” says Vikas Soni, an assistant professor who starts at USF Sarasota-Manatee in the fall, 

Soni, according to the statement, will oversee the lab, investment competitions and teach the principles of finance and the principles of investments courses.

The existing lab has 12 terminals.

A USF spokesperson says in an email that a $60,000 gift made by David Kotok and Cumberland Advisers established a fund that supports the lab. The upgrades will be covered through that fund.

(Kotok is the cofounder and chief investment officer of Sarasota-based Cumberland.)

The lab first opened in 2017 as a way for students to earn Bloomberg certification which would help that stand out against other job candidates.

A second lab is expected to open in the fall at the USF’s main campus in Tampa. According to the statement, it will be identical to the one in Sarasota.

The Sarasota-Manatee lab expansion is just one of the projects underway at the university’s 32-acre campus on Tamiami Trail, just north of the Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport.

A $42 million student center and residence hall is under construction on the site and slated to open in time for the start of classes in August. The six-story, 100,000-square-foot hall is going up on Seagate Drive, on the south side of the campus, just west of the Selby Auditorium and Crosley Campus Center.



Louis Llovio

Louis Llovio is the deputy managing editor at the Business Observer. Before going to work at the Observer, the longtime business writer worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Maryland Daily Record and for the Baltimore Sun Media Group. He lives in Tampa.

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