On the morning of 13th December, 2016, the Sensex was at its benchmark and so was Nifty. The stock prices rose and fell as they usually do. The entire stock market was as turbulently normal as it was supposed to be….except that on that particular day, the trading market had 35 new spectators – young, budding, brimming students endeavouring to understand it so as to become future investors.

It was the day when students of Grades 11th and 12th Commerce of AVM were taken on a one-day trip to Surat for gaining real-life experience of how equity markets work and to learn investment theories-cum-strategies.

The trip began with a visit to Jainam Securities Pt. Ltd., a stock exchange brokerage and advisory firm based in Surat with over 22 branches. Brimming with excitement and curiosity, students gathered in the conference room to attend sessions by Tejas Sir (Director of Research at Jainam) and Arvind Sir (Director, Niveshaay) regarding the working of the stock market trading floor with a real-time view as well as demonstration on the projector screen.

The veterans discussed various real-life examples and cases to illustrate the importance and different aspects of investing. The session left the students equipped with the knowledge of investing and stock-market volatility.

This was followed by a hearty lunch at Domino’s to the very delight of all the students. It was a fun-filled atmosphere which was further enriched by the students and teachers visiting the inside of Domino’s kitchen with a perspective to understand the working of one of the largest food chains in the world.

Thereafter, the students visited Swastik Classes to attend a session on “Investment Guidance” by a very prominent veteran investor, Mr. Siddharth Mandalaywala.

Filled with lucid real-life examples and easy-to-understand analogies, Siddharth Sir briefed the students regarding the importance and techniques of investment. From Warren Buffet to Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, he analysed and presented the strategies of great investors and gave the following advice:

  1. Investment requires patience.
  2. One should be passionate and always ready to learn.
  3. Investing is thoughtfulness over simple observations in routine life.
  4. Influence and fear are the foes of a genuine investor. So ignore them and reason with logic.

Ending with a highly interactive question round, the session was a thought-provoking one for the youngsters who would aspire to be future financial investors and analysts.

Although the official trip had now come to an end, it was only the beginning of another trip in the minds of the students: a trip to see everything from an investor’s perspective and realise that life offers opportunities, sometimes very clearly and sometimes in disguise.

It was worth noting that all the veteran investors who enlightened the students were young, budding and passionate…. working with whole-hearted devotion. Their talks and strategies clearly reflected their focussed temperament with respect to thinking, approach and investments.

Most importantly, every single one of them had mentors….. someone to look forward to for guidance and to learn, whom they repeatedly cited while briefing the students.

The most striking fact they shared was that all of them avoid watching television despite being involved in a news/update dependent industry, because they felt that it was an undue influence and it triggered fear for their otherwise calm and rational mind.

And all of this served as a huge inspiration for the students. It dawned upon them that if Warren Buffet reads 6 hours a day at the age of 86, despite being a billionaire; and that investors felt TV as a menace, it is the prime responsibility of a student to capitalize on whatever time, resources and talent he has.

Thus, the AVM students learned to invest.

-Yathansh Joshi (School Head Boy)