Alumni & Donors

Stevens Opens The Hanlon Laboratory for Financial Analytics and Data Visualization

The high-tech lab is the first academic facility of its kind, designed to prepare students for a high frequency, data-driven workforce.

(HOBOKEN, NEW JERSEY) The new Hanlon Laboratory for Financial Analytics and Data Visualization (Hanlon 2) at Stevens Institute of Technology brings advanced data visualization technology to the university setting for the first time, to support innovative curriculum models in finance and other data-intensive fields from healthcare to energy and climate science. This new facility, located within the Hanlon Financial Systems Center, reflects Stevens’ commitment to provide hands-on experience to students with the same systems and technologies they will encounter in the rapidly evolving financial industry and many other sectors of the data-driven economy. 

The Hanlon 2 Lab joins the existing Hanlon Financial Systems Lab, which opened in 2012 thanks to a generous gift from Sean Hanlon ’80 and his wife, Cathy. The Hanlon Financial Systems Lab is a state-of-the-art facility with Bloomberg terminals, real-time and historical market data, and software packages that can conduct trading simulations and develop financial models. 

In 2015, an additional gift from the Hanlon family allowed Stevens to establish this new financial research lab, expanding the opportunities available to students who study finance at Stevens. 

“This new lab will improve how students learn, enhancing both their technology and business skills and better positioning them to manage evolving technologies when they enter the workplace,” said Sean Hanlon. 

The Hanlon Laboratory for Financial Analytics and Data Visualization is the first academic facility of its kind that is fully equipped with technology from Oblong Industries, a highly immersive platform that allows for creative new ways to instruct and collaborate. The lab features several cameras and multiple high-definition, large panel screens, allowing presenters to seamlessly interface with the technology from multiple devices on location or remotely. In addition to Oblong technology, the lab features more than 30 workstations equipped with a full suite of industry-leading software from Bloomberg, FactSet, Thomson-Reuters, Morningstar and many others. The lab’s configuration and software capabilities also put a greater emphasis on data visualization technologies and machine learning, which have emerged as new areas of need in just the last few years.  

“The role of this facility goes beyond just the imparting of skills in using new technologies like the Oblong gesturally-controlled data visualization system,” said George Calhoun, Director of the Quantitative Finance Program, and Executive Director of the Hanlon Financial Systems Center. “It also gives students exposure to the type of collaborative and immersive team-work setting that is going to replace more linear presentation scenarios that dominate the corporate world today.”

The lab’s capabilities allow researchers to visualize large sets of data to more completely analyze it, allowing students to better understand issues such as cybersecurity and risk. Students transcend traditional lectures in a more fully participative manner, to add data or context to a presentation, with multiple teams of students able to interact with Bloomberg data sets simultaneously in real time. That high-level interaction helps students take their presentation and communication skills to an even higher level, representing greater value to employers.

The new Hanlon facility reflects the philosophy of the university. Stevens remains an established leader in thinking about how new and emerging technologies will disrupt existing business practices and create opportunities for smart managers able to understand how these tools are leveraged in a world increasingly driven by data and analytics. 

Stevens students benefit from being taught to think differently about these opportunities through faculty whose research is providing guidance to industry on how to think about risk management, innovation adoption, technology strategy, cybersecurity, and data and evidence-based decision making. Finally, Stevens’ location on the Hudson River allows for immediate access to Wall Street and the financial empire of New York City.

About Stevens Institute of Technology 

Stevens Institute of Technology, The Innovation University®, is a premier, private research university situated in Hoboken, N.J. overlooking the Manhattan skyline. Founded in 1870, technological innovation has been the hallmark and legacy of Stevens’ education and research programs for more than 145 years. Within the university’s three schools and one college, 6,600 undergraduate and graduate students collaborate with more than 300 full-time faculty members in an interdisciplinary, student-centric, entrepreneurial environment to advance the frontiers of science and leverage technology to confront global challenges. Stevens is home to three national research centers of excellence, as well as joint research programs focused on critical industries such as healthcare, energy, finance, defense, maritime security, STEM education and coastal sustainability. The university is consistently ranked among the nation’s elite for return on investment for students, career services programs and mid-career salaries of alumni. Stevens is in the midst of a 10-year strategic plan, The Future. Ours to Create., designed to further extend the Stevens legacy to create a forward-looking and far-reaching institution with global impact.

About the Hanlon Financial Systems Center

The Hanlon Financial Systems Center at Stevens Institute of Technology is a state-of-the-art financial research and teaching facility that directly supports academic programs at the undergraduate, master’s and doctoral levels. The Hanlon Center serves as a platform for financial systems research, and the development, testing and evaluation of software for financial networks and the investigation of cybersecurity challenges in the financial domain. The center was formed to apply systems thinking and related methods to analyze, understand, and characterize the behavior of the complex global financial system. Powerful hardware and leading-edge software tools replicate the look and feel of the technologies in place at real-world finance companies.