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Schellhase John
John Schellhase
Associate Director, Center for Financial Markets 
Africa and Capital Markets and Emerging and Frontier Markets and Europe and Finance and Global Economy and Public Policy and Regional Economics and Sustainable Development
John Schellhase is an associate director at the Milken Institute Center for Financial Markets. His work at the Institute is largely centered in advisory services and partnerships focused on deepening and strengthening capital markets in developing countries, and he also contributes to research on these topics.
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Top European Business School Students Test Drive 5minutefinance.org

By: John Schellhase
January 31, 2018
   
   

This past December, the Milken Institute invited students from two of the top business schools in Europe to attend the 2017 Milken Institute London Summit. During a day full of dynamic panels, the students from Cass Business School and IE University set aside some time to share their feedback on a new project from the Milken Institute’s Center for Financial Markets—5minutefinance.org.

Designed to complement textbooks and classroom instructions, 5minutefinance.org offers university students of finance—and their professors—new, interactive tools that make learning financial concepts more exciting and less intimidating. The website is full of interactive graphs, calculators, and apps that pull in real-time financial data from public companies. This interactive element is a revolutionary leap forward for financial education.

Two other components make 5minutefinance.org stand out from other educational offerings. First, it is completely free. No ads and no annoying pop-ups. Second, the site is built with collaboration in mind. Finance professors, students from undergrads to Ph.D. candidates, and finance industry professionals can help further develop current content or create brand new lessons via the online collaborative platform Github.

The university students who attended the London Summit believed 5minutefinance.org would be a valuable new weapon in the educational arsenal. Jacob Lundén-Welden, who is in his final year of the bachelor in business administration degree program at IE University in Madrid, said, “I wish I had this during all of my finance courses. I think it’s a great complementary tool that improves the way you learn the theory through practice with tools that are quick and easy to use.”

Ease of use was a consistent theme as the students responded to the site. Fadia Ouadhour, a third-year student at Cass Business School in London, said, “I think that the platform is really intuitive. It’s easy to use. I love the design of it. What I worry about when I first go to a finance website is that even the titles and the headings look complicated at first, but here it’s really straightforward.” IE’s Beatrice Castelli agreed: “I think it’s really powerful, and I find it easy to use. This is important because students are often intimidated by finance.”

These students from top European programs also loved the interactive apps on 5minutefinance.org. Nilly Fallah Damavandi from Cass Business School said, “It’s really good that it’s quite interactive. I really liked that there were examples and that you could play around with the information.” IE’s Rita Fernandez added, “I think it’s great that you have the chance to have the graphs already made for you so that you can just plot the data and get the results, and I like that they are interactive.” Students also said that they found it valuable to be able to pull real financial data from real companies as they learned about financial concepts.

Overall, the students from IE University and Cass Business School believed 5minutefinance.org would help students of finance like themselves learn concepts more easily and more quickly. As Ms. Fallah Damavandi said, “Right now I’m studying corporate finance, and this site has everything I’m studying. As I was reading, I was saying, ‘Oh, now I understand what this meant.’ It’s really helpful. I will definitely be using the corporate finance side of it. All in all, really helpful.” 


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