Career Academies

Experiential Learning

Experience is the key to success in any endeavor.

Implementing theory into practice is how you'll grow as a professional and leader. Every student in the Finance Career Academy will experience at least two semester-length consulting projects. Read on for details.

Henry Fund: Real Money, Real Decisions

Henry Fund's 2010 Management Team

In the second semester, after a rigorous selection process, selected students become analysts in the Henry Fund, an endowed equity portfolio. Each analyst researches real companies and makes investment decisions for an equity fund. The group seeks to achieve the highest level of return while maintaining a risk profile similar to the S&P 500 index. Henry Fund is a two-semester experience that you'll experience in place of the two projects described below.

Business Consulting Project—Year One

For the students not participating in the Henry Fund, your first consulting project is 16 weeks in length and facilitated by the Business Solutions Center (BSC). As part of a cross-functional team with your classmates, you'll cooperate with company execs, faculty, and BSC directors to deliver the final product. This is your first experience as an actual expert consultant, applying your technical skills to real business problems.

Hands-on Academy Project—Year Two

Solving Real Business Issues for Real Clients

Finance students not participating in the Henry Fund execute a hands-on consulting project managed by the Finance Career Academy. Distinctly different from the first-year project, the hands-on project hones your financial expertise. This Finance Career Academy project is a definite resume builder and another opportunity to face real financial issues in the real world. Experiential learning is an invaluable component of your professional development and career preparation.


The University of Iowa's Utilities and Energy Management group knows its role is "mission critical" to the university. They provide water, electricity, steam, heating, and cooling to a major research university and hospital. It's also critical to risk management; losing power, even for a short period of time, could be catastrophic.

Are the costly utilities an efficient investment? How much are the utilities worth to the university? How much should be invested to manage the risk of power outages? A team of MBA students performed an analysis and found that the basic utilities operations do create value for the university. But the real value lies in risk management.

More about this project