Providing University of Washington Students With Real-Life Quantitative Trading Experience

At QuantConnect, we’re always interested in how our users are deploying our institutional-grade technology across a variety of scenarios. With Organizations, QuantConnect is more flexible and customizable than ever before, allowing you to scale up and down your resource use as your team grows.

Since 2016, Tim Leung has served as the Director of the Computational Finance and Risk Management (CFRM) program and as an endowed Professor of Applied Mathematics at the University of Washington. The CFRM program, originally a masters degree and professional certificate program, has recently grown to include undergraduate majors as well. The program places a focus on quantitative finance, computing skills, and data science. 

The program’s professors encourage students to use QuantConnect in a number of classes that dive into trading systems, machine learning, and finance. These classes, Tim said, are where the platform aids in the learning experience of the class. With the help of QC, students can implement their ideas and theories from class and get real results using live data. 

“QuantConnect provides a hands-on program for students who are already proficient in programming to test out algo trading ideas that can go beyond the classroom,” Tim said. “This opportunity of getting their hands dirty with live data and implementing strategies and seeing it all in an organized fashion on QuantConnect is a great value to us.”

In the era of the COVID-19 pandemic, online learning is the only available option for students when on-campus resources are no longer available due to university pandemic guidelines.

Since the transition to online learning, Tim cites the online collaboration aspect of QuantConnect as being helpful in ensuring his students’ successful studies.  With practical experience becoming especially necessary in today’s tough hiring environment, QuantConnect provides University of Washington’s students with supplementary instructional materials such as bootcamp tutorials to equip them with necessary hands-on experience. This is a huge reward for students seeking to enter the job market post-graduation. 

Tim says he also sees a reward when his students use QuantConnect outside of the classroom. “I find it, intellectually, very rewarding for my students to be applying the theories and principles they learn in real life, and to be starting discussions about the real implementations of the strategies they’re working on.”

Tim also serves as the faculty advisor of the algorithmic trading club on campus, an undergraduate, student-run organization. No specific major is required to join the club, but they cater mainly to students pursuing degrees in computer science, finance, and math. Every year the club researches quantitative finance together and builds algorithmic trading strategies.

The club’s current chairman and president, Shile Wen, is an intern at QuantConnect while he studies Computer Science at the University. The club places a heavy emphasis on research, and he finds that the data available on QuantConnect — especially for students like himself — helps make their research more successful. 

“As college students, we can’t pay tens of thousands of dollars for data. We’d get data through an online finance library, or any data we could find. But we’re using QuantConnect now because there’s multitudes of data, which makes researching a lot easier.” 


By: Lexie

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