Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Zarb School Strengthens Its Ties With the Rotterdam School of Management at Erasmus University




Rotterdam School of Management students with Dr. Anoop Rai, Professor of Finance and Program Director
Rotterdam School of Management students with Dr. Anoop Rai, Professor of Finance and Program Director
Zarb M.B.A. student Peter Nicolardi on the Erasmus Bridge
Zarb M.B.A. student Peter Nicolardi on the Erasmus Bridge


Six M.B.A. students from the Frank G. Zarb School of Business at Hofstra University attended the Rotterdam School of Management (RSM) at Erasmus University in January 2011 for an intensive derivatives course taught by RSM faculty as part of the Hofstra-RSM exchange program. This program was made possible through a grant by the Netherlands-America Foundation, which provided scholarships to each student. Zarb students joined a group of Dutch students enrolled in the Master in Financial Management program (MFM), a one-year, intensive program offered by RSM. The Rotterdam School of Management has been consistently ranked as one of the top 10 M.B.A. schools in Europe and 26th globally by the Financial Times.


Derivatives and Risk Management was an intensive three-week course that identified, dissected, and explained complex financial instruments such as options, futures, and swaps. A thorough understanding of these financial products is crucial in a rapidly changing global marketplace. Very positive feedback was reported by Zarb students. They found the course to be very challenging because of the depth and breadth of the material. An understanding of complex financial models was required for valuation of these instruments. Students’ mathematical and statistical skills were tested and they were required to utilize high-level Excel software. The students were taught by a team of professors who are all distinguished in their fields.


Zarb students’ experiences were also enriched, both academically and socially, by their fellow Dutch students. All students stayed at housing arranged by the university. Students reported that their colleagues were indeed “citizens of the world” and possessed exemplary quantitative skills. Zarb students felt very accomplished after their successful completion of this rigorous program where they studied with some of the brightest business students in the world. "The Rotterdam exchange program provided the opportunity to experience different cultures, learn about derivatives from world class faculty and build a global network," said Peter Nicolardi, a Zarb graduate student who participated in the program.


Because of the success of the program and the continued generous support from the Netherlands-America Foundation, we plan to offer the exchange program in 2012. To increase the applicant pool, we plan to offer the program during the summer rather than the January session. We will begin interviews early in 2012. We also expect increased interest in the program due to the phenomenal growth in our Master of Science in Quantitative Finance program.


As part of the Hofstra/Rotterdam School of Management exchange program, a group of six students from Rotterdam School of Management’s Curacao program in the Netherlands Antilles enrolled in a finance course in June 2011 on the Hofstra campus. The students, enrolled in the Executive Master in Financial Management program, successfully completed their Bloomberg certification and their coursework for Management of Financial Institutions, offered by Professor Anoop Rai. This was the first year that the Rotterdam School of Management sent their graduate students to participate in the exchange program, and we expect to host additional students in the future.

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