On Tuesday, January 20, 2015, the Brimmer and May School held its tenth annual Kenyon Bissell Grogan Humanities Symposium, Our Economic Times. Keynote speaker John Spooner, P ’88, GP ’22, spoke about “Your Brilliant Future: Street Smart Solutions for the Problems You’ll Have,” and was introduced by his daughter, Director of Alumni and Special Events Amanda Spooner Frank ’89, P’22.
Mr. Spooner is a Managing Director of Morgan Stanley and also a best-selling author of No One Ever Told Us That: Money and Life Letters to My Grandchildren and Do You Want to Make Money or Would You Rather Fool Around? He lectures widely and has appeared on Wall Street Week, CNBC, and National Public Radio. Mr. Spooner is a guest commentator on Taking Stock on Bloomberg National Radio.
Mr. Spooner presented to Middle and Upper School students, student guests from Beacon Academy, parents, and faculty and staff stating, “There are seven billion people on the planet. How do you get yourself noticed? How do you write a resume, how do you write a college application that stands out? Who is going to separate you from the rest? It’s your specialty that will get you into the job market and into college. Start paying attention to what is special about you.”
On the subject of communication Mr. Spooner stressed that knowing how to write and communicate well is key. “You can always get a job if you are personable and if you can communicate through writing,” he said. “I believe in the value of personal notes. It separates you from the crowd.” He encouraged students to ask unusual questions that no one else asks.
And finally, he encouraged the audience to not give in to fear in regards to the stock market. He advised, “Almost everything that you are afraid of won’t materialize. Fear dives markets, and greed drives markets. Every time you feel fear in your belly, you should probably be buying not selling.”
Highlights of the Symposium included the many workshops offered to Middle and Upper School students throughout the day on world currency, fair trade, commodities, the economics of sports, bitcoins, and the economy of China,
Social Entrepreneurship for Millennials, Owen Meredith ’16
Owen Meredith ’16 is a member of the Global Studies diploma program, concentrating his studies on political science. Last March, Owen traveled to Shanghai, China, for EF’s Global Student Leadership Summit. His project for the Summit won him a spot in a lunch with former U.S. Ambassador to China and presidential candidate John Huntsman. This past summer, Owen attended the School for Ethics and Global Leaderships’s summer program in Washington, D.C. Owen has been accepted into the Catapult program, which provides select high school students with a comprehensive business curriculum, mentorships with corporate leaders and graduate students from top universities, and access to thought-leaders in technology, venture capital, and social entrepreneurship.
The Economy of Professional Sports, David Friedman P ’25, ’21
Brimmer and May parent David Friedman is Senior Vice President/Special Counsel for the Red Sox and Senior Counsel for the Fenway Sports Group. He handles a variety of legal matters and assists with the club’s interactions with Major League Baseball and other major league teams on a variety of legal issues. Mr. Friedman also serves as a board member of the Red Sox Foundation, and he works on government affairs matters in conjunction with the club’s Fenway Affairs department.
Currency Markets, Dr. Thomas Knox P ’28, ’26
Brimmer and May parent Dr. Thomas Knox graduated summa cum laude both A.B. and S.M. from Harvard in applied mathematics in 1999 before enrolling in the Business Economics Ph.D. program at Harvard with a National Science Foundation graduate research fellowship. He received his Ph.D. from that program in 2003 and accepted a teaching position at the University of Chicago. After a short time there, he moved into the investment management industry, and since 2009, he has been working at Convexity Capital Management. His work over the last decade has included analysis and trading of currencies, interest rates, and
Recreo Coffee: High Quality Under Socially Responsible Practices,
Hector and Miriam Morales P ’18, ’15
Brimmer and May parents Miriam and Hector Morales are entrepreneurs in the coffee
industry. Miriam graduated from Northeastern University with a B.S. in Industrial Engineering and Hector from Brown University and Boston University with graduate degrees in Geophysics and Hydrology. Today, they run Recreo Coffee & Roasterie, importing coffee from Miriam’s parent’s farm in Nicaragua and processing and distributing it in the U.S. and abroad.
A Survey of Bitcoin: a Fascinating Currency and Maybe More!, David Tarrant
David Tarrant is an experienced high-technology entrepreneur and executive; he is the Executive Director of Nubay Services (nubay.org), a non-profit with the mission to help non-profits using open source software applications. Mr. Tarrant has started and served as CEO of several software companies including Graphic Communications, creators of award-winning Freelance Graphics; ServiceSoft, one of the first Internet focused software companies; and SmartSource, a pioneer in digital marketing. He has also worked as a partner at venture capital firm NetVentures, where he was an operating executive for several of the firm’s “dot com” portfolio companies. He helped students to explore the idea and the future of digital currency.
Investing 101: How To Get Your Money Working for You, Alice Finn P ’18
Alice Finn, a Brimmer and May parent, is an entrepreneur in the financial services
industry who has been featured on TV, radio, and in various print and social media. She is the founder and CEO of PowerHouse Asssets LLC, an investment management firm whose goal is to give people, especially females, investment self-confidence. The workshop taught the basics of investing and five principles that provide a foundation for thinking about investing for one’s whole life.
Gotta Get Paid: Music and Economics, Ted Barker-Hook
Ted Barker-Hook is Brimmer and May’s AP® Economics teacher. He has a degree in history from Hobart and William Smith Colleges
How Can You Benefit from Trade with China?, Gina Chang
Before becoming a Mandarin teacher in several schools in the U.S., Hong Kong, and now at Brimmer and May, Gina Chang worked as a fixed income analyst for Moody’s. She holds a B.A. in Economics and Master degrees in International Studies and Business Administration. Ms. Chang grew up in Beijing, China.