Allegheny Students Earn Bloomberg Certification

Students with Bloomberg Certifications Have a Competitive Edge in Rapidly Changing Economy

Typical Bloomberg Terminal
Typical Bloomberg Terminal

During the spring 2020 semester, Assistant Professors Timothy Bianco and Michael Michaelides launched a new course, Introduction to Bloomberg Terminals.  This course is an interactive introduction to financial market analysis using a mix of Bloomberg modules and in-class software-based exercises. Students are exposed to key properties of financial data and applications to prepare for careers in financial institutions.

The first group of Allegheny College students who completed the course earned their Bloomberg certification in the Center for Business and Economics Bloomberg Lab.  The Bloomberg Market Concepts (BMC) is a course that provides an interactive introduction to the financial markets. BMC consists of 3 sections — Core Concepts (includes four modules – Economic Indicators, Currencies, Fixed Income, Equities), Getting Started on the Terminal and Portfolio Management. 

According to Gene Natali ‘01, CFA, CEO and Co-founder of Troutwood, a financial services and technology company,  “I am pleased to see the College’s inclusion of this important certification!  Efforts like this help to differentiate students pursuing internships and graduates looking for that first job.  Great work to Allegheny and to all faculty involved in making this happen. Most importantly, congratulations to the 19 participating students!

These students can now use their certificates to demonstrate market and industry knowledge that will give them the edge in the competitive job market: 

Lancaster Wu, Matt Massucci, Shannon Putnam, Alexander Lawson, Christian Geer, Rafael Balanquet, Trevor Day, Victoria Vradenburg, Anh Ta, Kevin Lee, Rachel Tobler, Alex Abadi, Samantha Valera, Robert Crowe, Emma Black, Logan Zorilla, Daeson Gibbs, Andrew Ferguson, and Cheyenne Wilson.

Reference:  Top Ten Student Uses; A Bloomberg Professional Offering

The Bruce R. Thompson Center for Business & Economics attracts Allegheny’s next generation of business innovators and entrepreneurs by providing a host of co-curricular activities that connect with and deepen their classroom experiences. 


Influencing Consumer Decision Making

Dr. Michael BarberaThe Bruce R. Thompson Center for Business & Economics welcomes Dr. Michael Barbera on Monday, February 3 at 12:15 pm in Quigley Auditorium.  Dr. Michael Barbera is an award-winning consumer psychologist and business strategist for Fortune 50 companies. He is a leading expert in the complex factors that drive the entire consumer decision-making process, including consumer behavior, emotion, and experience. His practice areas include social psychology, decision-making, brand management, marketing, product placement, and long-term business growth strategies.

As the chief behavioral officer at Clicksuasion Labs, Michael helps clients to better understand consumer influence and consumer behavior, both online and in person. With Michael’s help, companies build customer experiences that are more efficient, engaging, and effective. He also creates evidence-based solutions that affect both external marketing strategy and internal operations management with behavioral economics and behavioral finance.

Michael has worked with large organizations including Boeing, Microsoft, The Washington Post, John Deere, Harley Davidson, LendLease, the United States Department of Defense, and the United States Department of State. He has also worked with academic institutions including Ithaca College, Purdue University, Duke University, and the University of North Carolina. Michaels’s clients have also appeared on the Billboard Top 40, ABC’s Shark Tank, Bravo’s Million Dollar Listing, and Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares.

Michael champions entrepreneurs and business leaders as a teacher, moderator, and mentor. In 2015, the White House recognized Michael for his many contributions to entrepreneurship. Michael shares research, insights, and thought leadership as a celebrated keynote speaker, host of the Clicksuasion podcast, and dynamic TEDx presenter. More than 100,000 people have seen Michael speak on four continents, and he has earned more than 250,000 views online.

The Lunchtime Learning Lecture Series provides students with opportunities to gain valuable information on topics and industries related to internships and careers. Speakers often choose one of two broad areas to discuss with students. The first is career oriented, and fits under our CBE CAREERS lunches. The second is issue oriented, and fits under our CBE IDEAS lunches. Both topics enable students to navigate and explore job options, understand the steps necessary to pursue opportunities and how to self-advocate for opportunities in the workplace.

The “Whack a Mole” Syndrome:  The Economic and Environmental Challenges of Managing Trash

Jill Boughton, President W2Worth Innovations
Jill Boughton, President
W2Worth Innovations

On January 30th, Allegheny College welcomes Jill Boughton, President of W2Worth Innovations who will share her passion for discovering new solutions to the overwhelming problems associated with waste management in the US and around the world. 

Where others see problems in solving the world’s trash dilemma, Jill, a trained chemical engineer, sees solutions, so much so that her work was recently featured in the November 2019 National Geographic in an article entitled, “Others see waste. She sees worth.”

Jill Boughton is Founder and President of W2Worth Innovations – an organization that seeks to catalyze the use of solid waste as a resource as a means for mitigating the larger social, economic and environmental impacts caused by solid waste.   She began this adventure in 2012 upon retirement from a successful 24 year career at Procter and Gamble (P&G).    Over her career at P&G, Jill managed Product Development activities for several of P&G’s businesses, in categories ranging from Personal Health Care to Paper Products.    Her time with P&G included a seven year stint in Caracas, Venezuela, giving Jill first- hand knowledge of social/economic issues important to emerging regions.

Jill was well known within P&G for her specialty in developing and managing Disruptive Innovation portfolios.   One of the projects emerging from this work was P&G’s “Waste to Worth” program.  This program supported P&G’s long term environmental sustainability vision of having zero consumer waste entering landfills.  It specifically focused on addressing the growing issue of solid waste management in emerging markets through economic development and innovation.   Through this project, Jill has emerged as a leader in the field, specializing in objective evaluation of emerging technology and managing integration of technologies in this space.

When not in trash dumps, Jill resides in Cincinnati, Ohio with her husband, Bill Boughton.   They have two children, Jennifer and Benjamin, who have also pursued careers in science and the environment.

The Anatomy of a Recession

How close could we be to the next recession —and what should we watch for in the months ahead?

John Kutz ’83
Allegheny College Trustee
Sales Director, Legg Mason

The Bruce R. Thompson Center for Business & Economics will open the spring semester Lunchtime Learning lecture series by welcoming John Kutz ‘83, Sales Director for Legg Mason, who will present Anatomy of a Recession, an exploration of the important questions that can impact everyone’s financial health:

  • How close could we be to the next recession?
  • Will growth hold steady, weaken or pick up by the end of the year?
  • What factors are most important to watch to help keep people on track?

Students of all majors are encouraged to attend on Thursday to widen their appeal as potential job candidates, according to Kutz, “Your ability to understand and be able to discuss intelligently current market conditions can provide you with a competitive edge in your job or internship search.  Employers are seeking job candidates that have a grasp on capital markets and can discuss reasons for possible economic downturns and/or expansionary periods.”

Kutz will discuss capital markets and review where the US economy is relative to a possible recession.  He will introduce a Recession Risk Dashboard and discuss the 12 key variables that tend to foreshadow economic downturn.

John Kutz is a Sales Director for Legg Mason serving the Ohio Valley region. John has been in the investment industry since 1998, and he joined Legg Mason in 2011. Prior to joining Legg Mason, John spent nearly 18 years with Victory Capital Management as Managing Director, Retirement Plan Services.

John received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Allegheny College and an MBA from Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh. He is a Chartered Mutual Fund Counselor SM (CMFC®) and a recipient of the SPARK Accredited Retirement Plan Consultant (ARPC) designation. John also was recognized by his clients as a Top DC Wholesaler through the National Association of Plan Advisors’ Top 100 DC Wholesalers list (also known as the “Wingmen”) in 2014, 2015, 2018 and 2019.

John and his wife, Kathy, have three children, Allison, Maggie and Tim, and they live in Kirtland Hills, OH. In his spare time, John enjoys working out, golfing and biking. John currently serves on the Board of Trustees at Allegheny College.

The Lunchtime Learning Lecture Series provides students with opportunities to gain valuable information on topics and industries related to internships and careers. Speakers often choose one of two broad areas to discuss with students. The first is career oriented, and fits under our CBE CAREERS lunches. The second is issue oriented, and fits under our CBE IDEAS lunches. Both topics enable students to navigate and explore job options, understand the steps necessary to pursue opportunities and how to self-advocate for opportunities in the workplace.

The Effect of Unconventional Monetary Policy on Credit Flows

Business & Economics Faculty SeminarsEconomics Professor Tim Bianco opened the fall semester faculty seminar series on Thursday September 26, presenting his paper, “The Effect of Unconventional Monetary Policy on Credit Flows” prepared jointly with Ana Maria Herrera, Professor of Economics, University of Kentucky. Professor Bianco presented this paper at the Ohio State University Department of Economics 29th Annual Meeting of the Midwest Econometrics Group (MEG 2019).

Their paper evaluates the quantitative effects of unconventional monetary policy in the late 2000s and early 2010s when the federal funds rate hit the zero lower bound (ZLB). They compute credit flows using Compustat data and employ a factor augmented vector autoregression to analyze unconventional monetary policy’s impact on the allocation of credit among firms. They show that the impact of unconventional monetary policy on credit reallocation was substantial, especially for long-term credit. They then inquire what groups of firms accounted for this increased credit reallocation finding that, during the ZLB, unconventional monetary policy reshuffled credit towards firms typically viewed as financially constrained: small, young, high-default and highly leveraged firms. They also show that, during the ZLB, unconventional monetary policy brought about higher credit creation for firms of relatively high investment efficiency, suggesting this policy was key to fueling future economic growth. Download the full text of paper here in .pdf format

Timothy Bianco, Ph.D.

Timothy Bianco is an Assistant Professor of Economics at Allegheny College.  He earned a Ph.D. in Economics at the University of Kentucky, specializing in macroeconomics. Bianco attended Bowling Green University, earning a Master of Arts in Economics (2008) and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Economics and Finance (2006). His research focuses on macroeconomics, banking and corporate finance, and international trade and finance. He served as an Economic and Research Analyst at the Cleveland Federal Reserve Bank for four years, prior to joining the University of Kentucky (2013 – 2018).  He has been published in the Journal of Banking and Finance, the Handbook on Systemic Risk, the Journal of Financial Management and Analysis, and the Federal Reserve’s Economic Commentary.

Ana María Herrera, Ph.D.

Ana María Herrera is a Professor of Economics at the University of Kentucky. She earned both her B.A. and M.A. in Economics at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia and her Ph.D. in Economics at the University of California in San Diego. Herrera was a Repsol-YPF Fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School in 2005-06 and conducts research in macroeconomics, energy economics and applied econometrics. Her work has been published in the Journal of Monetary Economics, the Journal of Financial Economics, the Journal of Applied Econometrics and the Energy Journal.

The Bruce R. Thompson Center for Business and Economics organizes faculty seminars to provide Allegheny College and visiting faculty the opportunities to give presentations based on their research agendas. Students, faculty and staff attend to learn more about cutting-edge research.

Agricultural Technology, Bio-fortification & Child Nutrition in Uganda


“The immediate causes of malnutrition among children in Uganda and elsewhere continue to be the high disease burden as well as inadequate dietary intake. “ Dr. Rosemary Isoto

The Center for Business & Economics welcomes Dr. Rosemary Isoto on Monday, December 9 to present her paper entitled, “Agricultural Technology, Bio-fortification and Child Nutrition in Uganda.”

Despite big strides in economic growth, a general decline in poverty levels and an improvement in life expectancy at birth, Uganda continues to lag in terms of reducing child mortality and malnutrition. The immediate causes of malnutrition among children in Uganda and elsewhere continue to be the high disease burden as well as inadequate dietary intake. However, many other factors contribute to nutritional outcomes, among them, the performance of the agricultural sector.

Recent compelling study reviews reveal a number of key pathways that connect improvements in agriculture to improved nutritional outcomes. They include higher agricultural incomes, lower food prices, more nutritious on-farm production and consumption, and synergies between agriculture and nutrition and health arising from women’s empowerment. This study investigates the linkages between modern agricultural technology and child nutrition with a specific focus on production of bio-fortified food crops.

Dr. Rosemary Isoto is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Agribusiness and Natural Resource Economics (DANRE) at Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.

Before joining DANRE, she was a Post-doctoral fellow at Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy in Boston. She received her PhD from The Ohio State University in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics.

Dr. Isoto’s main research focuses on interlinkages between agriculture and nutritional intake among rural households, financing and marketing matters, issues of financing among youth, provision of extension services in a decentralized setting, gender and productivity, landfills and environmental issues among others.

She has wide knowledge on different models of credit provision in Uganda based on her own research and teaching of agricultural and agribusiness finance. She has also published extensively in journals such as Finance Review, Food Security, and Development Studies among others.

Allegheny College Faculty SeminarsFaculty Seminars are organized to provide a platform for Allegheny and visiting faculty to give presentations based on their research agenda.  Students, faculty and staff attend to learn more about cutting edge research in the field of business and economics.

Talking About Money and Taking Control: This Conversation isn’t Important – it’s Imperative

On Thursday, November 21, Gene Natali ’01 will speak on the important consequences of financial choices, particularly those made by students and young professionals.

How can we make wise financial decisions?

Join the Center for Business and Economics for lunch as Mr. Natali provides guidance on how to make better financial decisions and discover the rewards of financial freedom.

Mr. Natali is the CEO and Founder of Troutwood, a financial technology company focusing on financial empowerment. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Allegheny College and an MBA with a concentration in finance from Carnegie Mellon University. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst, board member of CFA Society Pittsburgh and part-time lecturer at the University of Pittsburgh.

In 2012 Mr. Natali co-authored an award-winning investment guide titled “The Missing Semester.” This guide provides practical financial advice to high school and college students and has been used in classrooms across the country. The book received the 2013 EIFLE (Excellence in Financial Literacy Education) Book of the Year award by the Institute for Financial Literacy. Mr. Natali regularly speaks in High School and College classrooms, has presented and key-noted various investment and education conferences, and has helped design and has led teacher and trustee training.

The Lunchtime Learning Speaker Series provides students with opportunities to gain valuable information on topics and industries related to internships and careers in business and economics. 

Plan Now for Life after Allegheny – Here’s Your Roadmap

Students of all majors are invited to attend a special Lunchtime Learning event where Professor Chris Allison ’83, Entrepreneur in Residence, will illuminate the many opportunities available for students with interests in business and economics.  “Your professional life will throw a lot of surprises at you, so planning is essential to respond to those setbacks quickly and effectively,” says Professor Allison. “So, failing to plan your educational journey is really planning to fail.”

Professor Allison will guide students in considering the many professional opportunities after graduation and offer suggestions on how to secure internships and achieve career preparedness by taking advantage of the multiple experiential learning activities offered through the Center for Business & Economics and the Allegheny Gateway.

Students in attendance will receive a copy of A Roadmap for Business & Economics, career guide along with along with an internship directory providing a brief overview of the internship opportunities most appreciated by Allegheny students with interests in business and economics.  Students will find information to set goals, learn how to get the most of their studies, prepare for jobs and internships as well as evaluate the many career and graduate school opportunities available to them as Allegheny College students.  Included in the Roadmap is a form for students to plan their courses and a career & co-curricular planning document – both forms will assist students with resume writing and setting goals for their journey after graduation.

We encourage students to attend this event prior to registering for spring classes.

The Roadmap for Business and Economics
Thursday November 14, 12:15 pm, Quigley Auditorium
Lunch will be provided

Professor Chris Allison, Entrepreneur in Residence and Co-Director for the Center for Business and Economics
Professor Chris Allison ’83 conducts a series of workshops for students throughout the academic year

Chris Allison ’83 Allegheny Trustee, Entrepreneur in Residence and Co-Director for the Bruce R. Thompson Center for Business and Economics

Professor Allison is the former Chairman & Chief Executive Officer Tollgrade Communications Inc. He is both the Entrepreneur in Residence and the Co-Director of the Center for Business & Economics.  A published author of two books and multiple articles in the Pittsburgh media, his teaching and research interests include Managerial Economics, Entrepreneurship, Financial Literacy, Investing Theory, Writing and Public Speaking. He is the host of the Financial Literacy Challenge and the annual Big Idea Competition where he shares his valuable executive experience to provide guidance and support to Allegheny’s next generation of business leaders.

Research Reveals Crawford County Tooling & Machine Industry Optimism

Allegheny Economics Research Team from left: Dr. Onyeiwu, Gillian Greene '20 and Matthew Massucci '20
Allegheny Economics Research Team from left: Dr. Onyeiwu, Gillian Greene ’20 and Matthew Massucci ’20

A summer research project led by Dr. Stephen Onyeiwu, Professor of Economics, conducted with students Gillian Greene ’20 and Matthew Massucci ’20 entitled, “Trends in the Tooling and Machining Industry of Crawford County, PA”* investigated the state of the industry through a comprehensive survey of 28 Crawford County manufacturers involved in the Tooling & Machining (T&M) industry.  Due to the unique history of the tool & die industry in the Meadville area**, Dr. Onyeiwu originally embarked upon this longitudinal study soon after arriving at Allegheny College in 2002.

This summer’s survey, published in August 2019, revealed that technological change and automation enabled northwest Pennsylvania manufacturers in Crawford County to experience growth for the past five years.  Local manufacturers see the industry as being stable for the next 10 years, though they see increasing opportunities in the medical equipment and device industry.

“Based on our previous surveys, we were pleasantly surprised to find the industry in such robust health,” commented Dr. Onyeiwu.  He continued, “We were equally pleased to learn that recent tariffs have not been detrimental to local shops, and that foreign competition is no longer considered the same formidable threat that it has been in the past.”

Why are Crawford County Tool Shops Doing so Well?

The research suggests there are seven important reasons:

  • Rising Costs– The cost differences between area tool shops and foreign competitors like China have narrowed, mainly due to rising costs in the foreign countries.
  • Quick Turn Around – Most tool shops said that turnaround time is critical for competitiveness, and have specialized to meet customer demand.
  • Quality Advantage – Crawford County shops have continued to maintain their reputation for high quality standards.
  • Product and Market Diversification – Crawford County shops have diversified their customer base in terms of the number of customers, as well as the range of products manufactured.
  • Cluster Effects – Tool shops in Crawford County operate in a cluster, the largest of which is located in the Meadville area. The benefits of clusters come by way of an agglomeration of traditional economies including access to skills, materials, services, markets, capital and economic development agencies within a geographic area.
  • Training Centers for Toolmakers – Although Crawford County is still facing skill shortages, it has training centers for toolmakers, including the Precision Machining Institute (PMI) and the Crawford County Career and Technical Center.
  • Weakening of Foreign Competition – while the survey did not produce a consensus of opinion, quality and delivery stood out as the reasons, particularly in specialized markets. Foreign competitors have also seen increases in their production costs, partly as a result of rising wages.

The Future Workforce, Competition and Regulation Remain a Challenge

Moving forward, area manufacturers will continue to invest in new technology, consider new training models for younger workers and have a greater focus on soft skills.  While foreign competition is not as onerous as it once was, domestic competition is much stronger than in the past.  Tool shops believe that OSHA should play a more constructive role and help educate firms on how to keep employees safe.

Despite the challenges, 85% of the shops expressed optimism about the future of the industry – that’s good news for Crawford County.

*Click here to read the full text version of the study:  Trends in the Tooling and Machining Industry of Crawford County, Pennsylvania

**Why Meadville is called Tool City USA

According to the City of Meadville, “the Talon Corporation, headquartered in Meadville, played a major role in the market development and manufacture of the zipper… In the 1980’s, the Great Lakes region saw a major decline in heavy industry.  This blow to the local economy was softened by a subsequent surge in light industry, mainly tool and die machine shops, earning Meadville the nickname Tool City, USA. Today, the Meadville area remains a leader in tooling, machining and advance manufacturing and the city serves as the region’s center for banking, education and social services.”

History of Meadville,

Stephen Z. Onyeiwu, Ph.D.

Dr. Onyeiwu is the Andrew Wells Robertson Professor of Economics at Allegheny College teaching courses in Managerial Economics, Advanced Managerial Economics, Management of Innovation and Technological Change, Introduction to Microeconomics, and African Economic Development. His research interests include the Technological Strategies of Firms, Small Business Development, Industrial Organization, and Global Economic Issues.

Student Researchers

Gillian Greene ’20 is a double major in Economics and Political Science with a minor in Middle East and North Africa Studies. Matthew Massucci ’20 is an Economics major with a minor in Mathematics.

Faculty Mentored Research

This research project is supported through the URSCA program for Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and Creative Activities.  Learn more at Allegheny College Research



Not every lesson is taught in a classroom, sometimes you have to take the field 

The surprising connection between business strategy and football

The ECON 240 class learning about business strategy on the field of play

Inspiring students to learn more today and in the future requires imagination and collaboration.

When Dr. Gaia Rancati, Assistant Professor of Marketing and Neuromarketing considered methods of teaching business strategy in her Business & Managerial Economics class, she reached out to Allegheny football coach Richard Nagy to brainstorm ideas on how to drive home the meaning and significance of strategy in every area of life. Why football?  Dr. Rancati shared her idea, “I believe that the connection with a professor and a coach can help to engage more students.  There is no sport like football with the ability to put business strategy into practice.”

According to Coach Nagy, “I was amazed at how our model of running a football program fit what Dr. Rancati was teaching,” he continued, “She has really made me think and examine some of the things that we do. She is a great resource for me moving forward. I also really appreciate her enthusiasm and passion and how she teaches and inspires her students.”

The student reaction has been very positive.  Football team captain and economics student Zach Wilson had this to say about the surprising connection between business strategy and football, “I never really made a connection with football and business strategy until Dr. Rancati showed me that they  basically have the same ideology. Looking at the bigger picture of business and football, it is important to understand that every level of the business needs to do their part in order for the firm to be successful. This relates directly to football because each person out of the 11 on the field needs to do their individual job for the desired outcome.”

He continued, “Another surprising connection is the concept of competitive advantage. In the business world, you must have a quality, product, service, etc., that is perceived by the customers as better than the competition. This competitive advantage makes your specific firm more successful in some way, whether that’s total profit, a relevant position for your audience, or in football terms, more wins than other teams.  Football strategy and business strategy are primarily the same in many ways and both aim to be better than the competition surrounding them. GO GATORS!”

Dr. Rancati takes the field with the Allegheny College football team to prepare for the coin toss, Oct. 19, 2019. Photo by Ed Mailliard.

Dr. Rancati was selected for the coin toss at the Oct. 19th football game where the Gators won a 49-0 victory –demonstrating that a little strategy can go a long way.  A native of Italy, Dr. Rancati, when asked about the differences between the European version of football, what Americans call soccer, and American football, she exclaimed, “Italy has its soccer history and the U. S. has great football!”

Gaia Rancati, Ph.D.

Dr. Rancati is the assistant Professor of Marketing and Neuromarketing at Allegheny College, a Visiting Professor – IULM University Milan, a Professor – IED Milan and the Head of Retail – Immersionneuro Los Angeles.  She is the winner of the Woman of Excellence 2019 Award for Customer Experience and Retail from the World Economic Forum.

Richard Nagy

Richard Nagy is a veteran coach with more than 30 years of experience at the Division I and III levels, as its 35th head football coach. Nagy, who served as an assistant coach and eventually held the title of associate head coach for the Gators in the 1990s, returns to Meadville after most recently serving as the defensive coordinator at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.