University News

WIU Ag Students Compete in International Commodity Trading Competition

December 5, 2022

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MACOMB, IL – A team of Western Illinois University School of Agriculture students recently competed in the four-week international electronic trading competition, the CME Group Trading Challenge.

The three-member team finished 356th out of 500 teams in the highly competitive event. This year's team members were agriculture business majors Kelsie Cawthon, a senior, of Macomb; Isabella Gray, a senior, of Blandinsville, IL; and Jaclyn Janssen, a senior, of Avon, IL.

The WIU team is advised by Agriculture Professor Jason Franken.

"I think it was a good learning experience for the students," said Franken. "I'm grateful to have students that are willing to go above and beyond course requirements by participating in such a competition and happy to serve as their advisor."

The competition is a simulated event that allows students from around the world to experience trading real-time futures using the CQG electronic trading platform. Team are made up of three-to-five students from each university.

Students start with $500,000 in simulated cash to trade with and this year's WIU team finished the competition with $455,224.

For more information about WIU's School of Agriculture programming, visit

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