Alumni & Donors

Stevens Business Club Welcoming Alumnus, a 'Flash Boys' Subject, to Campus

Phi Beta Lambda, the Stevens Business Society, is excited to welcome Stevens alumnus and financial entrepreneur John Schwall to campus for a discussion about success and the financial industry in general.

Schwall co-founded IEX (Investors Exchange) in 2013, and is its chief operating officer, but he is perhaps best known as one of the subjects of “Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt,” the nonfiction Michael Lewis book about a small group of traders who uncover corruption in certain high-frequency trading practices. The book examines IEX’s goal of rooting out shady practices in the markets.

Schwall’s talk will take place Feb. 11 at 4 p.m. in Room 228 of the Kidde Building on the Stevens campus.

Schwall, who graduated from Stevens with a bachelor’s degree in engineering in 1995 and earned an M.S. in Technology Management in 1998, has spent nearly 20 years in finance, including management roles at RBC and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. His success in the industry, along with his experience helping to start IEX, will be at the core of his presentation, said David Inga, a Stevens junior and vice president of PBL.

“John Schwall is an exemplary business leader who fearlessly leads the alternative trading system and directly competes with established exchanges in the center of the financial world,” Inga said. “His insight will be hugely valuable to students interested in entering the highly competitive world of finance, or who are interested in how technology is continuing to change this industry.”

That sort of insight is a critical focus at the Howe School, the business school of Stevens. Undergraduate majors in Finance, Business and Technology and Quantitative Finance (QF) offer an up-close look at the intersection of the finance industry and technology — and on a Hoboken, NJ, campus that’s just a 10-minute subway ride to Manhattan. The students behind the Schwall event — Inga, PBL President Elena Piper, a junior, and William McFarlane, a sophomore — all are majoring in QF. The Howe School also offers a master’s degree in Finance that produces graduates who can think quantitatively about opportunities in the sector and use technology to solve complex financial problems.

MORE: Undergraduate business majors at Stevens

In a 2014 interview with the Stevens Indicator, the alumni magazine of Stevens, Schwall said his Stevens experience laid the groundwork for his success in industry — both in the classroom and in his extensive extracurricular activities, such as the Stevens Honor Board; Sigma Phi Epsilon, of which he was president; and Student Council. “I like to think that I got real on-the-job training for my future career because I found myself managing a bunch of really smart engineers,” he said. 

All Stevens students are encouraged to attend the event, which will include a question and answer session with Schwall, as well as refreshments. Advance registration is not required to attend.

Caption information
Top: John Schwall, chief operating officer of IEX.
Bottom: Dr. Ann Murphy, center, associate dean of the undergraduate division at the Howe School, works with students in the Hanlon Financial Systems Lab.