Smart Woman Securities at the University of Notre Dame is committed to educating college females about investing in financial markets through educational training, mentoring initiatives, and hands-on investment experience.
Our SWS at Notre Dame chapter seeks to provide women within the Notre Dame community with the opportunities and resources that will allow them successfully enter the traditionally male-dominated finance industry. SWS hopes to break down the barriers that have historically deterred women from investing.
The SWS mission can be broken down into three main pillars: education, mentoring, and investing.
SWS’ education model is predicated on education from the introductory level. It involves more than just the academic experience of attending seminars and writing Investment Reports. Instead, we also aim to give women exposure to successful investors and mentors, as well as practical applied experience with managing a real investment portfolio.
Investment education is the foundation of SWS, as the organization ultimately aims to provide female students with the skills necessary to research companies and make investment decisions. The SWS education model is based on several tenets which combine to form a comprehensive and cumulative curriculum which we believe is helpful in giving students a basic framework in which to learn about investing.
Many student-run investment funds on college campuses are catered to students with prior knowledge and experience in investing, and with the majority of students being male, undergraduate women have often been deterred from joining these groups. Thus, the SWS curriculum was curated to build on finance and investing concepts from the ground-up, with no prior knowledge required. At SWS at Notre Dame, we focus on collective, dynamic learning through our seminar series (located on Sakai page).
SWS members have the opportunity to serve as a mentor or mentee in our mentorship program aimed at educating underclassmen about the opportunities within the financial services industry. With our comprehensive mentorship program, strong alumni networks, and highly competitive selection of our organization’s leaders, SWS not only educates its members, but creates an atmosphere in which women support one another to gain financial confidence and explore new career paths.
The ultimate goal of SWS is to educate women about investing and the financial markets. Thus, SWS encourages real-life investment experiences for students.
We hope to get our online investment portfolio up and running this semester. Members will have the opportunity to pitch a stock in a group of four, and we will monitor that stock through our portfolio. Groups will be assigned upperclassmen mentors to help them navigate the process, understand the reasoning behind a stock pitch, and learn how to build a DCF analysis from scratch. This competition will give female students the chance to pitch a stock without the high pressures associated with the male-dominated competitions on campus.