How do I make my finance club fun?

Hello my fellow chimps!

I run the finance/investment club at my non target university, and am in need to think of ideas for this year. I need help with these and would appreciate good ideas, 

  • How to make meetings fun?

  • How to get more people to join?

  • Various events throughout the year like a stock tournament, etc?

-Anything that makes meetings fun interesting and boosts membership?

Thank you guys for your thoughtful ideas, and to the trolls, EMA!

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Comments (18)

Jun 18, 2021 - 12:45pm

You can do party stuff, like drinks and music

You could invite some professionals from big banks to talk about experiences and things like that

You can create some competitions for fun, like creating teams to dispute quiz related to finance

"Markets can remain irrational longer than you can remain solvent."

- Keynes

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Most Helpful
Jun 19, 2021 - 3:35am

Love this topic since I switched majors to business after seeing how much fun and opportunities my friends were having in the business clubs.  I figure you're a club officer, so I'll give you some of my experiences.

  • Video scavenger hunt with randomized small groups (ie went to the largest mall food court and ordered pasta with red sauce and white sauce - I guess thought that was funny at the time).  If you can't get the off-site retreat early in the semester, do this.  Watch everyone's videos together at the end of the event and provide food.  Great for bonding and getting folks outside their comfort zone a bit.  I started this and it was a hit.
  • Off-site, over night weekend retreat (early in school year is best to form bonds; have some fun skits, team competitions).  Go big.  Like get a nice place/house. That will set the tone and set expectations for fun.  Enjoy partying with your friends. Lots of fond memories (and hangovers).
  • To be honest, very helpful to have some good looking girls in the club (helps with the young alumni/professional participation at events more so).  Helps with recruiting other members.  A lot of times it's luck of the draw but you can recruit.
  • If your school doesn't have an inter-club sports day, suggest it.  Tug of war, relay races, flag football, trivia.  Team games that out of shape business students can do decently well (or if you are in good shape, you dominate which is fun).  If too big of an ask at your school, challenge one or two other clubs. Rivalry! Us vs them is a great way to rally the team spirit, and fun.  At my school Beta Alpha Psi vs Accounting Club in flag football every year.  Competition was intense. Even had a trophy with the winning team and year on it.
  • How well you help place and prepare members into/for internships and jobs, will attract members.  It's really fun getting scholarships and job opportunities.  
  • Participate in competitions against other schools.  Bring home the glory.  Beat higher ranked schools.  Get respect.
  • Try to create a culture of openness as opposed to cliquey-ness.  I think actions / attitudes by the club officers is important.  I'd say, this will be one of the most important things you do as a college club officer.
  • Set high standards for participation and get people to stick to it, and charge dues.  Main thing is to get members to buy-in and dedicate.  
  • Have some exclusively (ie GPA) or build in this culture of success.  
     
  • Important to keep in touch with alumni.  As an alum I participated in a virtual zoom trivia night and that was good fun (in many ways zoom allowed me to participate from another state, which was a first.  Continue this).  The trivia was mainly geography based like guessing flags of countries, tallest mountains, etc.  great topics.  
     
  • helps to have a cool faculty advisor (if your club requires one).  Make sure you keep things in control.  Work hard, play hard.
  • Back in the day, I'd see a lot of club members at certain nightclubs, so a mix of professional student and your social life / friends, that really helped grow the friends network.  It was magical.  (Later a bunch of us moved to the SF Bay Area for careers and kept the party going, and more joined us over the years, but many of us first met in the business clubs).

The University of Hawaii's business clubs back in the day for me (and maybe still now) I thought was fun and beneficial.  If you need ideas, check out websites for BEST, Beta Alpha Psi, Accounting Club, and "Super Clubs Day" (for the sports competition), for ideas.  The best clubs have consistency in quality year after year. The professional community takes notice.

Other Observations

I found the Finance Clubs in general, one thing is they sort of lacked some concentration if there isn't really a investment banking, management consultingasset management, or Fortune 500 recruiting pipeline/focus (or a student led investment fund - that takes money).  The financial advisor/CFP and insurance tracks concentration, if that's a heavy concentration of finance career opportunity at your school, I feel gets more suited for a more mixed major club (general business, including marketing folks).    If that's what you have at your school, then check out Hawaii's BEST Club (the North Shore beach house was / is legendary).  They do mixed business major club well.
 

The accounting focused clubs like Beta Alpha Psi had more of a focused base because the Big Four and regional/local firms hire a bunch of your members and there is more structure.  You might see folks who are aiming for IB and consulting in BAP, like I saw with the undergrads at the MBA I attended.

So depends on your school.  If your finance club is less focused on particular employers and more mixed interest students, then concentrate more on general professional development (resume workshops, mock interviews) and the bonding events (video scavenger hunt, retreat).  If everyone is focused on a narrower list of employers (Big Four, etc) then the more nerdy pursuits (competitions, also we had an event where we invited the professionals and the student groups presented on topics relevant to industry, as well as the general prof dev stuff like mock interviews).  

I'm many years post-graduation but had very fond memories and I made the most of the opportunities.

Anyways, set a great culture (make everyone feel included, less cliques) and unity and good relationships/experiences will happen.

Have compassion as well as ambition and you’ll go far in life
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Jun 21, 2021 - 5:57pm

RedHotMonkeyBanker

We're funded from our university already. we get a budget every year, so would charging fees make it worse?

Hard to say from the limited info about your club, goals and amount of funding (is it $500 or $10,000, big difference).  I'd say, the amount say it's $500 - $1,000 could go towards food at club meetings.  
 

That does not leave much budget for say the Club Retreat.  So some amount for that (would probably have to charge additional, with the folks who are in the club but don't go helping to subsidize).

Other uses of funds:

- help pay for a team to go to a competition to represent the school (say you folks win your local/regionals)

- pay for that trophy for the flag football game

- annual banquet at a restaurant or hotel banquet hall (if there is shortfall, then charge additional for the event)

The business club I ran had over $20K annual budget, but I think that was higher than average because we also paid dues to the national organization. If you don't have that overhead, then that's good. 
 

You would be the best person to gauge willingness to pay. If there is no traditional of paying annual dues and your the club officer for this year then consider finding other ways to build buy-in.  One free way is being a club officer and the additional exposure to professionals and alumni, and also leadership.  The members who are aiming for that college experience should be your "core."  Then just build upon the success and hope the next year builds upon that.  
 

But say you are proposing this awesome club retreat starting this year and club dues will be collected but $100 a student, or whatever, then you are bringing something new to the table. 
 

School funding is key to getting some pizzas for the students and a nice gift (university swag, or whatever) for guest speakers.

A lot of times, you are at the mercy of how popular the finance major/career track is at your school. No sense having a big club for the sake of having a big club.  Get students who will be dedicated.  Otherwise you are just running a Speaker Series.  

Have compassion as well as ambition and you’ll go far in life
Jun 19, 2021 - 4:37pm

Straight up get everyone in a small group stock portfolio, offer banking technical preparation, have as many meetings as possible off campus (bars / places), and have house parties. We turned our fineco club into a frat pretty much.

  • CEO in IB - Ind
Jun 21, 2021 - 8:59am

Party. Seriously, just party. You're in college, everyone wants to have fun.

Throw parties, off-sites, weekend retreats. Drink, dance, pass out, network, bond, build relationships. 

Take it easy and don't stress too much. Life is all about relationships and good memories. How do you think these billion-dollar deals close? These guys are buddies who used to party together. Don't go into being a soulless hardo. Have fun and enjoy life!

Jun 21, 2021 - 4:06pm

Networking trips, networking trips, and networking trips. For our school's group, we have found that trips to NYC, Chicago or LA benefit the cohesiveness of the group dramatically.  We have an application process to go on the trip including a resume drop, a quick excerpt of why this trip pertains to you and general group involvement. The trips have corporate visits with alumni/known connections at certain firms, followed by free time to grab coffee with your own connections. At night, we do group dinners, grab drinks, comedy shows, etc.  There is no better way to bolster your groups success and comradery than these networking trips.  Excited that COVID restrictions are lifting so that we can resume these visits in the fall.

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