Independent Research 2008
Mentor: Dr. Joseph Pastore and Dr. Kathy Winsted
Title: An Examination of the Role NCAA Division I Basketball Plays in Collegiate Admissions and Fund Raising
Abstract: The purpose of the study is to examine the relationship between successes in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I athletics, notably men’s basketball, and a university’s success in attracting undergraduate applications and philanthropic and other financial support. In addition, some attention will be devoted to the financial and reputational risks inherited in using athletics as a medium for marketing the institution. The study primarily focuses on the performance of the top and bottom fifth placements in the Big East Conference and the top and bottom third placements for the Mid-Atlantic Athletic Conference, also known as the MAAC. The impact of marketing sports on an institution in relation to their admission trends as well as alumni donations is examined. The importance of this study is directly linked to the value of marketing college sports at the expense of student athletes and academics.
Mentor: Dr. Ronald Filante
Title: Mortgage Lending Practices: Have They Caused the Subprime Crisis?
Abstract: Mortgage lending practices have evolved over time. In today’s economy, a mortgage loan, particularly a subprime mortgage loan, goes far beyond just a borrower and a lender. Most companies do not want to bear the risk these loans exhibit; as a result, they are transformed into mortgage-backed securities that create separate pools of rates for different classes and maturities many investors call Collateralized Mortgage Obligations (CMOs). Our financial economy’s current state has fueled fears for the past year and a half of a major global credit crunch, a condition in which investment capital is difficult to obtain. This study will demonstrate that subprime mortgage lending practices have become a major player in this crisis.
Mentor: Dr. Padjama Kadiyala
Title: In Search of Liquidity
Abstract: By analyzing the stock market listings of TMB (Brazil), a telecommunications firm, on its domestic stock exchange (Sao Paulo Exchange), the New York Stock Exchange and a second foreign exchange (Frankfurt Exchange (GER) this study demonstrates that the NYSE offers superior liquidity relative to other markets. The liquidity measures include an 11% better chance of price improvement, zero price impact, 3-times greater depth, and 3.4-times tighter spreads.
Mentor: Dr. Kathy Winsted
Title: The Effects of New Media on Cost per Thousand (CPM)
Abstract: New electronic media is free to use and can therefore increase exposure of advertising without increasing the cost. For many businesses, new media vehicles such as YouTube.com have become a primary outlet for their advertising. It is still unclear as to just how much new media increases exposure of advertising. In order to answer this question, this study focused on Superbowl advertising. The estimated exposure of the ads televised on the Superbowl was added to the exposures on the new media outlet YouTube.com to determine a new CPM. The costs were compared to calculate the effectiveness of the new media. To better understand the findings, a small convenience sample was surveyed. Exposures on YouTube of the top ten and bottom ten ads from the Superbowl established that creativity leads to more exposures on the internet and reduces CPM still further.
Mentor: Prof. Edward Child
Title: Doing Business in the Emerging Markets of Latin America
Abstract: This study addresses new global relationships, specifically between the United States and the emerging markets of Latin America. Today, global trade is an important contributor to national wealth, the United States its largest player with estimated 2006 imports and exports totaling about $2.7 trillion. In the second half of the 20th century, American commercial and geopolitical interests converged in the fundamental belief that increasing global trade is like the rising tide that raises all ships. Yet, not all nations participate and benefit equally. In particular, commercial relations with Latin America reflect a mistrust that has evolved from the unequal economic circumstances and a perception of trade imperialism that makes a treaty, trade ruling, or other market-opening initiative appear to favor American interests. As companies seek competitive advantage in the global marketplace, they are forced to develop strategies to deal with emerging markets. This study examines the differences in these markets and their impact on commercial opportunities, addressing why Latin America has failed to benefit in the same way as China and India.
Mentor: Dr. Ronald Filante
Title: Dollar/Yen Forecasting
Abstract: In the past years, as the U.S. economy is heading toward a recession, the U.S. dollar has been depreciating in relation to many currencies. Various factors influence a decline of the U.S. dollar, such as inflation and trade balance. This paper explores the impact of these factors and, using a regression model, will attempt to forecast the foreign exchange value of the U.S. dollar in terms of the Japanese Yen at the end of 2008. The paper also discusses other ways of forecasting the U.S. dollar value, such as looking at the monetary and fiscal policies and their lag effects.
Mentor: Prof. William Pappenheimer
Title: Building a Power PC for Non-Linear Editing
Abstract: Finding a computer powerful enough to run today's demanding software can be a daunting task for an event videographer, young graphic artist, or freelance web designer. Most personal computers that can handle the popular Avid Editing Systems at professional speed cost as much as $2,000 even without being fitted with the personalized set up that the user requires This project demonstrates how a fully customized PC capable of running the best graphic software may be built for half the price of the typical Super PC. Three criteria important to the research were: easy customization, continual data back up, and safe over clocking (running hardware faster than it is set in the factory) abilities.
Mentor: Prof. Surenda Kaushik
Title: Effects of Changes in the Exchange Rate of U.S. Dollars on the Chinese Economy
Abstract: Fluctuations in currency exchange values produce direct effects on the market. Changes in exchange rates of U.S. dollars affect many different variables. This paper considers the effect of changes in the exchange rate of U.S. dollars on the Chinese economy. Specifically this paper studies the variables of foreign direct investment inflows, foreign direct investment outflows, exports and imports. The changes in these variables from 2002 to 2007 are analyzed. Understanding the effect of changes in currency exchange rates today offers insight into understand economic implications for the future.
Mentor: Dr. Bette Kirschstein
Title: Hide and Seek with Identity: The Role of the Quest in the Psychological Metamorphosis of the Children's Fantasy Hero.
Abstract: This study discusses the psychological aspects of the quest in children's fantasy literature in which the hero is a child. The differences between child and adult heroes are explored, as are the transition from childhood to adolescence, and the hero's search for, and development of, a personal identity. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (1865), The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum (1900), The Story of the Amulet by E. Nesbit (1906), The Magician’s Nephew by C. S. Lewis (1955), A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle (1962), The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper (1973), and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling (1997) are examined.
Mentor: Dr. Kathy Winsted
Title: Product Placement Recall
Abstract: Branded Entertainment spending has been steadily increasing in recent years and among this type of advertising, product placement has shown the most growth. Last year marketers spent $2.90 billion to have their brands featured in movies and television - - a 33.4% increase from the year before. Companies place their products, hoping to produce an active response in consumers. Research has shown that consumers do remember seeing products in movies; however, this study proves that the majority of the people who are exposed to product placement do not remember the brand names.
Mentor: Dr. Marilyn Weigold
Title: Legacy of a Leader
Abstract: This study assesses the historical legacy of former Commander-In-Chief and 40th President, Ronald Wilson Reagan. Research references Reagan’s formidable contribution to subsequent U. S. politics by analyzing his domestic and foreign policy. Ultimately, Reagan revolutionized the presidency and provided conservative reconstruction, restoring moral guidance to American society. Epitomizing the Roosevelt Corollary, an aphorism popularized by Teddy Roosevelt, “Speak softly, but carry a big stick,” Reagan followed an aggressive foreign policy. Exercising diplomacy, Reagan deterred those countries deemed dangerous, while preserving peace with amiable nations. This paper examines his ideological perspective, constitutional interpretation, executive appointment of Supreme Court justices, laissez-faire economic strategy, implementation initiatives, administrative style, preliminary exposure to modern terrorism driven by Islamic extremism, Cold War tensions, U.S.-Soviet Russia relations, Latin American involvement, Grenada invasion, Iran Contra, relationship with Pope John Paul II, and role in conquering communism. Analysis also includes biographical content to portray Reagan, his personality, and its influence on presidential administrations.
Mentor: Dr. Patricia Healy
Title: Changes in International Accounting
Abstract: In a world where companies no longer stick to their geographical roots but instead expand globally, the standards and principles they follow to account for their businesses is of extreme importance. The passing of "Concept Release for public comment on allowing U.S. issuers, including investment companies, to prepare their financial statements using International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), as published by the International Accounting Standards Board" by the Securities and Exchange Commission has changed the way that financial statements are presented by foreign companies on U.S. stock exchanges. This paper discusses how financial statements were presented before the SEC passed their new law. Many foreign companies follow IFRS, which was previously not allowed by the SEC and therefore those companies had to reconcile to U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). This new law will allow foreign companies to report their financial statements to investors without the reconciliation. Recent developments show that U.S. firms being allowed to use IFRS is not an "if" question but a "when.” With recent changes to accounting laws, institutions of higher education will be required to change their curriculum to prepare students for the future.
Mentor: Dr. Joseph Pastore
Title: Italy: Enjoying the Euro or Longing for the Lira?
Abstract: This paper attempts to identify the impact of Italy’s currency migration from the lira to the euro. Specific attention is devoted to assessing the change that has occurred to the Italian economy, with some reference to the political and social context in which the Italian economy is formed. The study concludes that, while data and sentiment appear to indicate that the transition to the euro has not helped depressed economic and social (and, therefore, political) conditions in Italy, the incrementally adverse consequences of the currency change are no more compelling than a composite of forces which have been a large part of the Italian culture and social structure for centuries.