updated 3/23/2011 8:17:44 PM ET 2011-03-24T00:17:44

CAMARILLO, Calif., March 23, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Martin V. Smith School of Business & Economics at CSU Channel Islands has announced the official launch of the Institute for Global Economic Research (IGER) to be held Friday, April 8, on CI's campus. The launch will feature a presentation by Dr. Sung Won Sohn, IGER's Director, entitled "National Economic Outlook and Its Relationship to the Local Region." The event, which is open to the public, begins at 12 p.m. and includes lunch. Reservations are $25 per person.

Sohn, an endowed professor at the Martin V. Smith School of Business & Economics and nationally renowned economist, said that the Institute will be the first of its kind within the region, helping to link regional economy more closely to the global economy. A primary function of IGER is to develop future workforce leadership by providing international perspectives to students through learning opportunities based on practical experience.

Sohn will teach a course that focuses on banking as part of the new MBA program. He contends that, "No matter what business field a person is in, knowledge of banking practices is essential. When someone applies for a loan, he must understand what needs to be in place to secure the loan. How is a loan evaluated?" From the standpoint of going into a banking career, Sohn explained that an individual must, for example, know about government regulation, how much capital to set aside and how to price loans. "My aim is to graduate students so they can enter a career and hit the ground running. I want to make students more useful to business."

IGER is uniquely positioned to complement existing economic forecast programs by focusing on global and national economies with a special emphasis on the Pacific Rim region. Sohn mentioned that many companies in the tri-county area have global and/or national outreach. 

The Institute will serve as an information resource on international, national and regional economic data and forecasts, and facilitate international contacts and research that is relevant to current events and the interests of local companies. It will also be of great value to companies who are contemplating national or international expansion.

The synergy created by IGER will benefit regional companies and provide them with a pool of highly qualified graduates familiar with the needs and operations of national and international companies and the ability to utilize and organize economic data for the benefit of their employers.

Sohn's background includes his position as President and CEO of Hanmi Financial Corporation, Executive Vice President and Chief Economic Officer of Wells Fargo Bank, Senior Economist on the President's Council of Economic Advisors in the White House, and tenured professor in the Pennsylvania State University system. He is a published author and was named by the Wall Street Journal in 2006 as the most accurate economist and, in 2010 as one of the top five forecasters in the country. He currently serves on various industry and university boards.

To register for the event visit: http://business.csuci.edu/IGER.htm . For additional information contact Merissa Stith, Events Coordinator, at 805-437-8548 or merissa.stith@csuci.edu.

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