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The Citizens Bank Tri-Cities Foundation Ltd. has committed a significant gift to the University of Tennessee College of Business Administration to make sure its students stay well-connected to Wall Street.

The funding supports the leases on twelve Bloomberg terminal licenses for the next five years and is valued at $1 million. The college houses the Masters Investment Learning Center, which operates the Bloomberg terminals for faculty and student research. Hundreds of students receive training on the terminals each year to utilize Bloomberg’s data analytics. The College of Business is one of a few business schools with as many Bloomberg terminals.

The Citizens Bank Tri-Cities Foundation, led by brothers Sam, Chris, Steve, and Joe LaPorte, are longtime contributors to the university.

“Having access to Bloomberg, the premier financial data software used worldwide by investment professionals, is critical for UT’s graduates,” said Chris LaPorte, on behalf of the family. “Increasing the center’s capabilities greatly expands the college’s ability to educate its students and allows them to earn Bloomberg Essentials Acknowledgements, gaining hands-on experience with data analysis.”

All the LaPorte brothers attended UT and two graduated from the College of Business Administration.

Jim Wansley, Clayton Homes Inc. Chair of Excellence in Finance and head of the Department of Finance, said the terminals are invaluable tools for students and faculty members.

“We are grateful to the LaPorte brothers and their families, as well as the Citizens Bank Tri-Cities Foundation for their support of the Masters Investment Learning Center and its mission, and in particular, their investment in expanding the learning opportunities of students here,” he said, adding that the gift will put UT “at the leading edge of investment education.”

The family is native to Elizabethton, Tennessee. Brothers Sam and Joe LaPorte reside in Elizabethton. Chris and Steve LaPorte live in Houston, Texas. Chris is a member of the UT Development Council and UT Foundation Board. He chairs the Foundation’s audit and finance committee. Sam is a new member of the College of Law’s Dean’s Circle and UT Knoxville Alumni Board of Directors.

In addition to the College of Business, the Citizens Bank Tri-Cities Foundation supports UT athletics and law programs. The college’s LaPorte Torch Fund provides MBA students the opportunity to gain valuable experience managing a real world portfolio of securities. The Katherine I. LaPorte Classroom is named in honor of their mother in recognition of the family’s support of the college. UT’s LaPorte Stadium for track and field events is also named for the family.

For more information about the College of Business Administration, visit http://bus.utk.edu.

C O N T A C T :

Chip Bryant (865-974-2919, cbryant@utfi.org)