Trading lab earns support of Bob Young ’64 and Murfin Inc.

The two contributors see value for students — and their prospective employers

Bob Young of Murfin Inc.
Bob Young ’64 is an early contributor to the Global Trading and Research Lab in Clinton Hall, home to the W. Frank Barton School of Business. He’s shown here in the offices of Murfin Inc. in downtown Wichita. Young is president and chief financial officer of Murfin Inc.
 

Bob Young has had two occasions in his business career when he helped take a private company public. One of them landed him on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, watching as two officers in the newly formed company rang the ceremonial bell to open the day’s trading.

   So when the opportunity came along to support the creation of a Global Trading and Research Lab at Wichita State, it resonated with him. Young looked back on his long career with Murfin Inc. and thought how useful that kind of financial training would have been for him — especially while working on the public offerings.

Proposed Trading Lab Rendering
Image provided by GLMV

This rendering of the Trading Room and Research Lab features computers at every work station, a ticker tape with stock and financial information scrolling overhead and flat-screen monitors on the walls carrying financial news from around the world.

   “A trading lab where you can learn about the activities of the New York Stock Exchange, or any exchange, has a great deal of value in my eyes,” says Young, a 1964 graduate of Wichita State who now is president and chief financial officer of Murfin Inc. “When you talk about capitalism, that’s what it’s all about — raising capital. I think every student needs to have an education on how capital is raised. There’s a real value to exposing students to market operations.”

   Young and Murfin Inc. have contributed $75,000 each to the Global Trading and Research Lab, which will be financed primarily through private funds. Though seed money has been provided by the university, private support is needed for construction, equipment and software. Naming rights to various components of the Trading Room and Research Lab will be offered to those supporting it.

   If fundraising efforts go as hoped, the Trading Room and Research Lab will open next year in a glass-enclosed room on the main floor of Clinton Hall, home of the W. Frank Barton School of Business. The initial price-tag is about $600,000, but plans are to raise another $400,000 to create an endowment for long-term sustainability. The lab will be equipped with real-time stock quotes, international data feeds and financial analysis software.

   Young said it wasn’t hard for David Murfin, chairman and CEO of Murfin Inc., and him to recognize the potential benefits of the simulated trading room. Murfin employs about 1,000 people companywide, and has hired its share of Wichita State graduates over the years. It plans to continue doing so, Young said, so it supports the university’s efforts to sharpen their skills.

   “Because of what we do here, I’ve been interested in the markets and how they work,” Young said.

   The gift from Young and Murfin Inc. moves the Barton School of Business at Wichita State closer to having the kind of trading lab a top-tier business school must have today, said Doug Hensler, dean of the business school.

Trading Room Hallway view
Image provided by GLMV

Hallway view of Trading Room and Research Lab.

   “Theirs is the inaugural gift in our fundraising efforts and represents private support that is essential for this project,” he said. “We’re gratified by their confidence in our efforts to provide an environment where students learn by doing, which will give them a competitive edge in their careers upon graduation.”

   Giving financially to Wichita State and especially to the Barton School of Business is something Young said he’s proud to do, but he feels a sense of obligation, too.

   “I certainly had a good experience at Wichita State and received a great education that allowed me to progress in life,” he said. “Whatever success I’ve had, I couldn’t have done it without Wichita State.”

   Young was an engineering student initially but quickly decided it wasn’t for him. He was looking at a bulletin board in the WSU business school one day and saw some information about career opportunities for accountants. That got him to pursue a degree in accounting, something he earned in 1964, the first year WSU joined the state university system. “I started at the municipal University of Wichita but graduated from Wichita State University,” he said with a laugh.

“A trading lab where you can learn about the activities of the New York Stock Exchange, or any exchange, has a great deal of value in my eyes.”

- Bob Young '64

   Young began his career in 1965 with Peterson, Peterson and Goss CPA. He joined Murfin Drilling as controller and financial advisor in 1974, moving up in the company and then in Murfin Inc. through the years.

   Young calls the Global Trading and Research Lab an exciting project that will improve the ability of the Barton School of Business to compete with other schools for high-caliber students. Its high-profile location in Clinton Hall will help create an energizing atmosphere. He’s already talked to some friends and business acquaintances to try to spark their interest in supporting the initiative.

   “I’m certainly proud to be a part of it,” he said. “I think it’s an appealing and valuable project.” 

    Click here to learn more about the Trading Room

 

  

circle arrow If you would like to learn more about ways to support the Trading Room and Research Lab, including naming opportunities, contact Angela Dudley, WSU Foundation director of development for the W. Frank Barton School of Business, at (316) 978-3837 or at angela.dudley@wichita.edu.

 
Follow Us:

 Pinterest  Google Plus Instagram

 

Wichita State University Foundation

1845 Fairmount St., Wichita, KS 67260-0002

Phone: 316-978-3040 | Fax: 316-978-3277 foundation@wichita.edu

© 2014 Wichita State University Foundation

Wichita State University Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and donations are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by law.