Outstanding Professor 2020

The Big Picture for an Outstanding Professor

Professor Scott Fung receives University’s Phillips Outstanding Professor Award.

By Alexa Ann Paelmo

Each year, Cal State East Bay’s Faculty Affairs committee gives the highest honor for teaching: the George and Miriam Phillips Outstanding Professor Award. For the 2019-2020 academic year, the recipient of this award is Dr. Scott Fung, the Jack and Susan Acosta Professor of Finance in the College of Business and Economics. 

This award was established in memory of former Superior Court Judge George Phillips and his wife Miriam, longtime supporters of the university and community. Melissa, the wife of their son Jim, is also an alumna.

The Outstanding Professor Award is given to faculty with exceptional achievements in teaching, academic and professional contributions, and involvement in the campus community. The recipient of the award is selected each year by a subcommittee of the Faculty Affairs Committee. Nominations are accepted from within the university community and the winner of the award also receives a cash prize. 

As an Acosta professor for the College of Business & Economics, Dr. Fung continues the legacy of academic excellence and inspiring students. From giving open lectures on day trading to researching effective investment in future stocks, Dr. Fung makes financial concepts relevant to students, alumni, and the Cal State East Bay community alike.

"Dr. Fung is an amazing faculty member who embraces the teacher/scholar model.” said George Low, Dean of the College of Business & Economics. “His passion for both discovering new knowledge through his research and helping students learn is evident in everything that he does.  We are very proud of his accomplishments in the many years he has been at CSUEB, and are honored to have him as a colleague in the College of Business and Economics.  This prestigious award is well-deserved."

“Dr. Fung is really passionate about finance and articulates complex topics into easy to understand material for his students,” said former MBA student William W. “He incorporates real-life investment simulations in his class, which allow students to apply his teachings and experiment with the real market.” 

In a conversation, Dr. Fung shared his journey to Cal State East Bay, his passion for finance, and how it played into the bigger picture of life application.

Where are you from? Where did you grow up?
I am from Hong Kong. I grew up there until I went to high schools in Toronto and Sydney.

What triggered your interest in finance?
While some might think finance is just about numbers and formulas, it is more about the stories, the big picture, insights, and applications. The financial markets are dynamic and constantly changing.  The relevance, challenges, and creativity triggered my interest in finance. 

How did you start working at Cal State East Bay?
I joined Cal State East Bay in 2006 as an Assistant Professor of Finance.  I am very grateful for the opportunities to work with our students and colleagues.

How has your experience been with transitioning to online classes?
It was both challenging and rewarding.  While the classes are transitioning to online, I am looking for opportunities to utilize or leverage the online teaching tools and technologies to provide our students a productive and engaging learning experience.

What’s one of your favorite or memorable research projects?
This is a tough question because all of them are my favorites. For example, research projects on futures and options not only provide insights on understanding derivatives markets and trading but also have implications on strategies and policies. These research projects can be incorporated into teaching and sharing of new knowledge with our students.

What projects are you looking forward to this coming semester?
As mentioned above, the financial markets are ever-changing. I am looking forward to working on new projects on the emerging issues in the financial markets, such as those related to the 2019-2020 Coronavirus Pandemic.

To see other recognized faculty from the College of Business and Economics, visit the Staff Awards page.

The College of Business and Economics extends congratulations to Dr. Scott Fung on his exceptional achievements and joining the legacy of outstanding professors at Cal State East Bay.  

To support academic programs and research by students and faculty like Scott Fung, give to the College of Business & Economics by going to​ ​www.csueastbay.edu/giving/cbe-giving/​.