Comprehensive University Endowment Trust Fund
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Stephen Lacewell, Ph.D.
The Center for Banking and Finance
The Center for Banking and Finance is directed by Dr. Steve Lacewell. Dr. Lacewell developed a certificate program in general banking which contains 10 different bank-related courses. This program is currently being marketed to area financial institutions. Dr. Lacewell was also instrumental in creating a new finance elective class titled “An Introduction to Counter Threat Financing”, which is course FIN 350. This class was created in response to an increased need for professionals in the bank secrecy and money laundering areas. For the year he made several presentations to student groups concerning various financial topics. Two of these presentations were part of the FREE Program (Financial Responsibility Empowers Everyone) at area high schools. He was able to address approximately 100 high school students during these presentations and all were conducted outside the normal classroom environment. He also made nine FREE presentations to student groups and civic organizations addressing another 200 plus participants and was an invited keynote speaker for a professional development seminar on campus. To further promote financial literacy Dr. Lacewell participated in financial literacy meetings with other Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business faculty and the Center continued as a member of the “Money Smart” program developed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
Dr. Lacewell has published his research in several journals including one publication and one acceptance this year. He currently serves as a reviewer for the Journal of Commercial Banking and Finance, the Journal of Business Disciplines, the Journal of Economic Education, and the Journal of Business and Public Affairs. Further activity involved serving as an ambassador for the University by providing invited expert commentary for several news articles.
Dr. Steve Lacewell, as director of the Center, serves on the Opportunity Loan Fund Committee for the city of Paducah, Kentucky. This is a joint program sponsored by the Paducah Chamber of Commerce and Paducah-area banks. Its purpose is to provide loans to minority small-business owners. Types of loans include start-up loans, inventory and equipment purchases, and operating loans. Loan applicants will be first encouraged to apply for traditional bank financing. If the applicant does not qualify for bank financing they will be considered for a loan directly from the Chamber of Commerce. A pool of money was given to the Chamber by the Tennessee Valley Authority several years ago for this purpose. Dr. Lacewell has received approval from the committee to utilize MSU students to help analyze the loan applications. This is a wonderful opportunity for MSU students to obtain real-world experience while helping to expand the local business community.
Internships and Permanent Employment
Dr. Lacewell has been active in establishing the “Let’s Keep Them At Home” program in Paducah, Murray, Mayfield, and Paris, TN. This program focuses on the “brain drain” in rural areas. This occurs when young people leave rural areas due to the lack of job opportunities. This program works with local businesses to establish internship opportunities for area students. Hopefully students will be encouraged to relocate, after college, back to these rural areas thus providing businesses with young, well-educated employees with a desire to stay in the area due to family, friends, etc.
The Center for Banking secured several internship opportunities for students during the 2004 – 2005 academic year. This is a great start for this program and a wonderful opportunity for MSU students as well as internship sponsors.
Several students applied for internships in the Henderson “Let’s Keep Them At Home” program. Applications were distributed in classes but the actual number of students receiving internships in not known.
The Center for Banking was directly involved in the employment of six graduates during the year. This is an excellent start and provides excellent opportunities for both students and financial institutions.
Dr. Lacewell will focus additional resources on research for this year. FIS (Financial Information Systems) bank and bank holding company data has been purchased by the Center at a cost of $4,000 per year and can be used by a variety of faculty and students in the College to aid in the process of research and publications.