Wharton Impact Newsletter, Our community, your inbox.

April 2022 • Edition 8

In this month’s edition, find out why the future really is finance; where Wharton is delivering impactful alumni events next in its return to the road; and who has been named the School’s Inaugural Howard Marks Endowed Professor.

The Future Is Finance

Bruce Jacobs
Dr. Bruce I. Jacobs, G’79, GRW’86, helping support the future of finance.

Thanks to the generosity of Dr. Bruce I. Jacobs, G’79, GRW’86, 10 second-year MBA students majoring in quantitative finance have been named Jacobs Scholars.

Members of this elite group are focusing their studies on applying financial economics to security pricing and asset management. They each receive a $25,000 award in support of their tuition.

Finance education and research have long been pillars of a Wharton education. The Jacobs Scholars highlight the evolving role of quantitative finance in business.


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On the Road Again

Dean Erika H. James (r) and Professor Kartik Hosanagar kicking off the Wharton Impact Tour.

Wharton returned to the road — with the Wharton Impact Tour making its first stop last month in San Francisco, where attendees shared warm feelings reflecting the city’s deep ties with the School. For more than 20 years, the Wharton San Francisco campus has served as a hub of academic and entrepreneurial activity for students, alumni, and other professionals in the region.

“I’m so excited to be here in San Francisco to kick off our in-person Wharton Impact Tour!” said Dean Erika James to an enthusiastic crowd at the Palace Hotel. “The energy and action here in San Francisco is unmatched anywhere else.”

There was a lively response from the 130-plus alumni in attendance who welcomed James to her first, in-person alumni event since she began her tenure at Wharton in July 2020.

Professor Kartik Hosanagar fielded questions from James and the audience about the emerging role of artificial intelligence in business. Hosanagar said that, for those considering how AI can elevate their business plans, “Don’t start with AI first. Instead, decide what problem you are trying to solve and then ask how AI can solve it.”

James added that Wharton has the depth and breadth to reimagine education and that those looking to Wharton for futuristic business solutions like AI will find the School leading the way.

The Tour makes its next stop in New York City on May 3. Experience the impact and the excitement of the Wharton School live along with fellow alumni, Dean James, and Wharton neuroscience thought leader Professor Michael Platt.

Supporting Behavioral Economics and More

Professor John B. Kessler (l) and Howard S. Marks, W'67.
Professor John B. Kessler (l) and Howard S. Marks, W'67.

Business Economics and Public Policy professor Judd B. Kessler has been named the inaugural Howard Marks Endowed Professor at the Wharton School, established to support faculty in the field of behavioral economics and behavioral investing.

In his research, Kessler, who joined the School in 2011, investigates the economic and psychological forces that motivate individuals to contribute to public goods, applying his theories to acts like organ donation, worker effort, and charitable giving.

The professorship was established by Howard S. Marks W’67, an emeritus trustee, whose philanthropy and service to the Wharton School — and across the University — spans more than three decades. Marks’ most recent gift will advance knowledge and outcomes in industry, building on his belief that today’s student should understand and explore the intersection of behavior and business in the global marketplace.

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