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For Immediate Release
June 4, 2018
ABA Media Contact: Mike Townsend
(202) 663-5471 
Follow us on Twitter: @ABABankers

ABA Stonier Graduate School of Banking Unveils New Features for Industry’s Next Generation of Leaders

Alternate reality simulation generates real-world outcomes for theoretical banking decisions

​WASHINGTON — The American Bankers Association today announced that it will unveil two new features at the 2018 ABA Stonier Graduate School of Banking, which will be held June 7-14 at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School in Philadelphia. For the first time, the ABA Stonier program will utilize Wharton’s award-winning alternate reality Looking Glass platform to immerse first-year students in the world of entrepreneurial disruption. In addition, ABA is introducing a new alumni platform in partnership with 360Alumni to facilitate greater networking and continued engagement with the thousands of Stonier alumni who are in leadership roles throughout the industry.   
“These innovative features help create a truly holistic and immersive experience for our industry’s rising stars to learn and stay connected with each other and with ABA,” said Jim Edrington, ABA’s chief member engagement officer. “It’s often said there is no better way to learn than by doing, and the Looking Glass program at Stonier immerses our bankers in real-life situations that generate realistic outcomes based on their strategies and decisions.”
Alternate Reality Simulation Immerses Bankers in Real-World Scenario
The Stonier Looking Glass simulation was custom-created by renowned experts in simulations and gaming, Wharton’s Ethan Mollick and Sarah Toms. Organized on small teams, students will undergo a challenging simulated scenario as the “disrupters” in an established Internet of Things industry (analogous to the current FinTech market). They will be immersed in a competitive, multi-day mission incorporating elements of entrepreneurial strategy and early-customer acquisition, security and privacy dilemmas, crisis leadership and effective team dynamics. In addition to in-game interactions and a culminating debrief, the simulation’s core learning objectives will be underscored by expert-informed team feedback on key decisions and best practices.
Alumni Platform Boosts Stonier Grads’ Ability to Connect and Engage
The new 360Alumni platform will allow past and present Stonier graduates – as well as graduates of the National School of Banking that was offered by America’s Community Bankers prior to its merger with ABA – to connect with each other and engage with ABA. The platform facilitates networking opportunities through mentorship, job boards and local events. Additionally, alumni will be invited to provide insight for future program content as ABA looks to help groom new industry leaders.
Offered in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, the ABA Stonier Graduate School of Banking trains the future leaders of the industry. Nine percent of last year’s 684 attendees were executive vice presidents, chairmen or CEO’s, while an additional 27 percent held the title of vice president or director. In addition, many attendees represent federal regulatory agencies or firms serving the industry. All participants are considered rising stars in their organizations and represent more than 48 states and 21 countries. For more than 80 years, Stonier has trained more than 26,000 of the nation’s top banking executives and government regulators, many of whom have reached the pinnacle of their organizations.
Graduates of the program receive a Stonier diploma as well as a Wharton leadership certificate.  For more information on the program, visit
The American Bankers Association is the voice of the nation’s $17 trillion banking industry, which is composed of small, regional and large banks that together employ more than 2 million people, safeguard $13 trillion in deposits and extend nearly $10 trillion in loans.
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