Project Center

pexels-photo-159888“The Wall Street/FinTech Project Center is a great stepping stone for motivated students who are looking to make the transition to a career in the financial services industry.

It provides both the student and sponsor with an opportunity to accomplish a real world project while being a part of a unique college experience.”

| Jason Tondreau | Millennium Management | WPI FinTech Collaborative Executive Advisory Board Member |

 

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WPI – Boston Seaport at 303 Congress Street in Boston, MA.


UNDERGRADUATE MAJOR QUALIFYING PROJECTS

The WPI  Wall Street/FinTech Project Center is devoted to solving real-world operational challenges for major financial services firms and FinTech innovators related to the intersection of technology and finance.

Each year in the WPI academic B-Term between October and December, WPI undergraduate student teams complete Major Qualifying Projects (MQPs) with investment banking and other financial services firms.

As a result of these 9-credit, full-time, senior-year, capstone projects, students gain practical, business-driven design or research experience within their major area of study related to finance, management, technology, or mathematics.

Although students work full-time onsite at sponsor firm locations in New York, Boston, and elsewhere, this is not an internship program.  Instead, the Wall Street Project – FinTech Center offers students and firms a supervised academic and business project consulting experience.

Students are selected for the undergraduate MQPs by the Project Center faculty through a competitive application process in the year preceding the MQP.  The process takes into account students’ past project and work experience, academic success, in-person interviews, and a written application.

Seaport Team

FinTech student team members and faculty joined a project sponsor when they participated in the 2018 grand opening of WPI – Boston Seaport facility. From left to right are: Marcel Blais (Assoc. Teaching Prof. – Mathematical Sciences), Khasan Dymov (MS – Financial Math), Alexander Shoop (MS – Financial Math), Kevin Sweeney (Prof. of Practice – Finance), Rekik Tafesse (BS – ECE), Ian Sheridan (Managing Dir. – Vestigo Ventures), and Andrew Aberdale (BS – MIS & MGE).


GRADUATE PROJECTS

In partnership with the WPI FinTech Collaborative and the Center for Industrial Mathematics & Statistics, the Wall Street/FinTech Project Center also leverages the expertise of WPI graduate students in business, financial mathematics, data science, technology, and other relevant disciplines.

These graduate students often work with the undergraduate MQP students on a common set of initiatives.

They play mentoring roles for the undergraduate team members, and they participate in strategic planning and implementation of key elements of the projects.

They produce separate, complementary graduate-level assignments in connection with their contributions to projects.

Graduate student projects can also be undertaken independently from the undergraduate MQPs on a standalone basis throughout the year.


pexels-photo-1011329FACULTY ADVISORS

As part of the WPI project-based learning model, students receive substantial guidance and support from Faculty Advisors in their major areas of study.

The undergraduate and graduate students complete a substantial project deliverable related to technology, data, and finance for the sponsoring industry partner, while they also complete an extensive academic analysis and paper with the input and oversight of Faculty Advisors from their major programs.

One of the strengths of the WPI Wall Street/FinTech Project Center is the intensive preparation students undertake in collaboration with their industry sponsors and their Faculty Advisors before they arrive at their sponsor firms. This allows student teams to complete complex projects that generate real, value-driven results in full-time assignments during a 7 to 8 week academic term for undergraduate MQPs and in part-time assignments during 14-week semesters for graduate student projects.

Learn more about the faculty.


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A student project team makes a presentation during the March 2017 Forum.

STUDENT PROJECT TEAMS

Project teams are interdisciplinary and may be comprised of students from any of the following undergraduate majors:

  • Management
  • Management Engineering
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Electrical & Computer Engineering
  • Mathematical Science
  • Actuarial Science

Graduate students have included candidates for MS degrees in IT, Marketing & Innovation, and Financial Mathematics.


pexels-photo-534757PROJECT LOCATIONS

Although most projects take place in metropolitan New York City or in Cambridge/Boston, MA the Wall Street/FinTech Project Center has also managed projects in other locations globally, including (for example) London, England and Glasgow, Scotland.

We are happy to consider supporting projects in the United States or internationally, if they meet the academic goals of the MQP or graduate assignments at WPI, and if they involve the linkage of finance, business, and technology in the financial services or related sectors.


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ANNUAL “FINTECH FORUM”

Each year in the spring, the Wall Street/FinTech Project Center hosts its “FinTech Forum” on the campus of WPI or at other locations.

Senior executives from sponsor organizations and other financial services and technology firms join students, faculty, business leaders, and alumni to discuss the role of technology and innovation in financial services.

Bank_of_America_Merrill_LynchBank of America Merrill Lynch  hosted the April 2018 Forum at its offices at One Bryant Park in New York City.  The featured event of that Forum was a Reception and Panel Discussion.  The theme of this year’s Panel Discussion was “how FinTech will impact the way we interact with our money.” 

The panelists included:

  • Marcel Blais (Associate Teaching Professor of Mathematical Sciences – WPI)
  • Scott Burton (Managing Director – Angelo, Gordon & Co.)
  • Anup Menon (Managing Director & Head of Strategy & Emerging Technology – Bank of America Merrill Lynch)
  • Harvey Stein (Head of Quantitative Risk & Analytics – Bloomberg LP)

winner-1548239_960_720OUTSTANDING WALL STREET/FINTECH MQP AWARD

Each year during the day of the FinTech Forum, the WPI FinTech Collaborative Executive Advisory Board (including project sponsors) holds a regular meeting at which it views presentations by the undergraduate Major Qualifying Project (MQP) student teams from the previous fall (B-Term).  This group of business leaders chooses the best overall projects for the previous academic year.

The 2018 Outstanding Wall Street/FinTech MQP Award went to the student team comprised of:

  • Evan King (BS – Computer Science)
  • Harry Ramachandran (BS – Industrial Engineering)

rsz_1angelo_gordon__co_595768_i0They worked at Angelo, Gordon & Co. where they built a P & L report for a new fixed income credit strategy. They sourced current trades and calculated P & L estimates along with risk numbers, and they developed a user interface to easily access and manage this information.

Evan and Harry’s company advisor was Scott Burton (Managing Director).  And, their faculty advisors were Michael Ciaraldi (Professor of Practice – Computer Science) and Renata Konrad (Associate Professor – Industrial Engineering).

Student award recipients may include this recognition on their résumés in addition (of course) to the professional experience that they have gained from their project work.  The selection process for awards is highly competitive, and both sponsors and students appreciate the opportunity to celebrate their achievements.


Forum

WPI FinTech Collaborative Executive Advisory Board Members Andy Clark (left) Greg Friel (right) participate in a career forum at WPI in March 2017 sponsored by the Foisie Business School and Career Development Center.

WPI FINTECH COLLABORATIVE EXECUTIVE ADVISORY BOARD

  • Jey Amalraj | OppenheimerFunds
  • Scott Burton | Angelo Gordon & Co.
  • Andy Clark | BNP Paribas
  • Greg Friel | Millennium Management
  • Anup Menon | Bank of America Merrill Lynch
  • Jason Tondreau | Millennium Management
  • Silvia Velasquez Casado | Goldman, Sachs & Co.

The Wall Street/FinTech Project Center is part of the broader WPI FinTech Collaborative, and it works closely with the Collaborative’s Executive Advisory Board.

The Project Center strives to meet:

  • The current and ongoing business needs of the financial services and technology industries, and
  • The academic needs of the students who participate in sponsored projects.

The Executive Advisory Board helps the Project Center meet these objectives.  The members of the Executive Advisory Board provide the Project Center with feedback on the industry and its changing strategic, technological, and project management expectations.

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WALL STREET/FINTECH PROJECT CENTER CONTACT

Kevin Sweeney | Professor of Practice (Finance) | Center Director

  • Mobile: 413-427-7416
  • Emailkmsweeney@wpi.edu
  • Address: WPI | Gateway Park | 50 Prescott St. | #1324 | Worcester, Massachusetts | 01605

Present and Past Student FinTech Project Sponsors

Angelo, Gordon & Co. Logo.Vestigo Ventures logo.Cogo Labs logo.

Barclays logo.BNP Paribas logo.Bank of America Merrill Lynch logo.

State Street Corporate Logo.Royal Bank of Scotland Logo.JP Morgan Logo.

Deutsche Bank logo.Morgan Stanley logo.