Students Gain Real-World Experience

Blue image of virus behind graph of stock market displayThe Investment Challenge conducted by the Department of Business at County College of Morris (CCM) provides students with real-world experience in investing and life skills that are valuable to gain even during the best of times. This year’s challenge, however, was especially educational as participants learned about investing during a pandemic with turbulent markets.

Winning this year’s Investment Challenge were Austyn Zaug, of Florham Park, in First Place; Henry Velasco, of Randolph, in Second Place; and Michael Feger, of Morristown, in Third Place. This is the second year CCM has conducted the challenge. About 250 students took part in this year’s competition. All students from the college are eligible to participate.

Students taking part in the Investment Challenge, each receive $100,000 in pretend money to invest in the stock market. The winners are determined based on the performance of their stock portfolios.

Professor A. Vinay Ved, who teaches Investment Principles at CCM and oversees the investment competition, says students learn several important life skills though the challenge.

“They learn to be analyzers and not reactors and how to distinguish between news and noise,” says Ved. “Equally important, they discover that losing is a great opportunity to develop persistence. As Morgan Wootten stated, ‘You learn more from losing than winning. You learn to keep going.’”

The Business department held a virtual award ceremony on Zoom for the participants to celebrate their work and the winners, who will be sharing $500 in prize money.

At CCM, students can earn either an associate degree in Business Administration to transfer to a four-year institution to earn a bachelor’s degree or a Business Professional associate degree for immediate entry into the job market upon graduation. The college also offers certificate programs in Finance, Foundations in Business and Small Business Management. To learn more, visit