The Penn State Investment Association (PSIA) was founded in the fall of 1999 with the intention of providing students with a strong foundation in the functioning of the capital markets. In designing the organization, the primary founders, Ali Chaudhry and Nathan Kline sought to involve students in the research, analysis, and maintenance of a securities portfolio using a hands-on approach that would effectively bridge the gap between classroom concepts and real world situations.
Moving forward to the Spring 2000 semester, the club existed in a trial phase and assumed the role of a provisional, not yet official, organization. At this point, the club maintained its exclusivity and carried out general meetings accordingly. At first, decisions were primarily made regarding geographic regions and research chairs reflected these areas as well. However, concentration shifted to sectors more closely reflecting the S&P 500 shortly thereafter. Of paramount importance during this period was successfully obtaining the authorization of the University for official organization status. The founders attribute the ease of acceptance to PSIA’s interactive and realistic qualities, which differentiate it from virtually any other organization. Therefore, in 2005, the Nittany Lion Fund was born at the hands of many students hard work over the years.
Currently, PSIA is a popular club amongst Smeal undergraduates and has developed leaders who have landed careers with investment banks such as Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, and Morgan Stanley. Today, PSIA moves ahead with great momentum and will continue to be led by passionate and talented students.