Omaha, Nebraska rarely rises to the top of the list as a must-see travel destination. However, it did for 20 Ivey MBA and HBA students from George Athanassakos’ value investing classes, who recently returned from the Cornhusker state for a visit they will not soon forget.
The students, along with professors George Athanassakos and Alessandro Previtero, had the distinct privilege of being from the only Canadian school to have a private question-and-answer session and lunch with arguably the world’s most famous investor, Warren Buffett.
Joined by seven other universities from the United States, the students held court with Buffett discussing a wide range of topics from value investing to his love for playing bridge with Bill Gates. To view some of the topics discussed, please see Ben Graham Centre interviews.
“Spending time with Warren Buffett gave me tremendous insight and perspective and offered a rare chance to hear from one the greatest investors in the world,” said Eric Otto, HBA ’12. “However, what really resonated far beyond mere financial advice was that he spoke very candidly about the importance of being a good person and citizen.”
In spite of his stature as the third richest man in the world, Buffett offered some very down to earth advice for the future business leaders. He suggested the most important thing is to follow your passion, and to never trade your reputation away for money.
“The trip was life-changing. Meeting Warren reinforced the idea that good guys really can be quite successful,” said Brent Osborne, MBA’12. “The biggest lesson I learned from him was that there is nothing as important or powerful as a well-grounded optimism in humanity, and that we’ve only just begun to tap our collective human potential.”
Photo below: Ivey’s HBA and MBA students with Warren Buffett