SUNY Oneonta’s 2018 College Fed Challenge team, a group of the college’s most talented economics and business economics students, earned an honorable mention award after advancing to the semifinals in the Liberty Street Division of the College Fed Challenge competition on Nov. 14.
Only eight teams out of 39 advanced to the semifinals, and Oneonta is tied with Pace University for advancing to the semifinals the most times (six out of 14 years of the competition). The students received financial support for the trip to the semifinals from the Caroline '67 and David D'Antonio Student Travel for Excellence Fund.
Five presenters—Justin Whitney, Amanda McHale, Nicole Lapinski, Meredith Bergman and Alan Wynne— represented the Oneonta team in the preliminary round on Oct. 24 at the Federal Reserve Bank in New York City.
The five students gave a presentation on the economy that included a forecast of near-term changes in economic and financial conditions that would impact monetary policy, risks to their forecast, and a recommendation for a stance on monetary policy. Teams are required to prepare a slide deck consisting of charts and graphs used to determine their policy recommendation.
The five presenters then answered questions given by a panel of judges in a 15-minute session. The panel consisted of New York Fed economists and staff who are experts in their field.
“The College Fed Challenge is an unforgettable experience in economic analysis, monetary policy decision-making, public speaking and teamwork,” said Assistant Professor of Economics Christine Storrie, the team’s adviser. “Our students’ ability to work as a team is incredible. They possess a cohesiveness that is rare.”
While only five representatives formally presented to the judges during the competition, SUNY Oneonta’s team totals 17. Presenters, alternates and non-presenting team members work collectively on the presentation throughout the semester and travel together to New York City for the competition. The non-presenting team members prepare the five presenters with potential questions from the judges and ensure the accuracy of the data and content of the required slide deck.
The Oneonta team offered a presentation on campus that served as a dress rehearsal for the Fed Challenge during an evening event for faculty and students. The presentation was entirely student-run and included discussion on monetary policy and policy tools, the Fed Challenge competition and recruitment, and a question and answer session with the audience. There were more than 90 in attendance.
“The preparation for the Fed Challenge has been an amazing opportunity for the students to test their ability to think analytically and act on their feet,” said Storrie. “The quality and thoroughness of their presentation is extremely impressive, and I couldn’t be happier to see that all of their hard work and dedication has paid off.”