The GFS Global investment team (from left) Kelly Zhang, Vanessa Huang, Leo Wang, Ethan Rupp, Aidan Curry and Malana Li.

A team of six students from Germantown Friends School (GFS) competed in the finals of The Knowledge@Wharton High School (KWHS) Investment Competition this past weekend, a global investment simulation for high schoolers.

The student-led team, called Dollar Tiger$, was the only finalist from Pennsylvania and one of just six from the United States out of over 300 entries. Sophomore Vanessa Huang was the founder of this 50 percent female team, which is a stand-out ratio for finance, a field in which more than 90 percent of senior roles are held by men. While the team didn’t win the competition, they were commended for both their investment strategy and their team dynamics.

The KWHS Investment Competition was created to provide a unique and interactive learning experience for students and introduce them to possible college and career interests. Students learn about teamwork, communication, risk, diversification, company analysis, industry analysis and investing, and practice strategic thinking, analysis, and collaboration. Each team manages a portfolio of $100,000 in virtual cash for a “client” over the course of 10 weeks, using Wharton’s online trading and investment simulator (OTIS).

The finale included a comprehensive final investment policy and presentation to a panel of investment experts and included teams from the U.S., Brazil, Canada, Cyprus, France, Germany, Norway, Romania, Switzerland, United Kingdom, China, Indian, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates.

GFS students included sophomore Huang; and juniors Aidan Curry, Malana Li, Ethan Rupp, Leo Wang, and Kelly Zhang. All members of the team are part of the school’s Investment Club, which Huang co-launched with teammate Leo Wang less than two years ago for students interested in investment and the economy, and curious about how the stock market works. She sent an email to her classmates to gauge interest and was pleased at the response; a room full of people signed up for the first meeting.

“The KWHS Investment Competition has been an exciting experience for me and offered a hands-on way of learning about finance,” said Huang. “Last year’s competition was actually the inspiration for launching the school’s Investment Club and made me realize that so many students at GFS are interested in how the stock market works.”

The Investment Club is now a weekly platform for students to learn more about world economy, finance, and investment, and share what we’ve learned about business from our own discovery. I’m proud of both our team’s accomplishment as a KWHS finalist and proud of our entire club for advancing our knowledge of finance.”