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Students apply banking, business skills in real world

Students get up-close look at how bank refinances several hundred million dollars

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SAN ANTONIO – A group of local students, already immersed in banking and business at Lanier High School, are getting to see how those skills apply in the real world.

Students got an up-close look at how a bank refinances several hundred million dollars, meant to help their school district.

Why are the students smiling? They're on the only bond trading floor in San Antonio. 

"I know not a lot of people get this opportunity and so I'm pretty blessed to have come here," said Sarah Chavez, a junior.

"I think honestly this is a really good experience just to get more hands on and more open view of the real world compared to when I was just in high school," said Anthony Rodriguez, a senior.

Or in the movies, Hollywood's version of highly-charged wheeling and dealing, or the daily fervor on Wall Street. 

"It's nothing like that, it's just people who know how to make deals, to sell what they want to sell," said Rodriguez. "Probably the first 30 minutes is when we'll get most of the calls."

The business and management magnet students were there as Frost Bank, the lead underwriter and began selling 300-million dollars in SAISD bonds to institutional investors.

"Hopefully we'll get them all sold this morning and save the school district some money," said Don Frost, Executive Vice-President of Frost Bank. "They are asking questions and participating in this bond offering."

There is an estimated $35 million in savings which could mean lower property taxes and a sizable lesson in real world finance beyond their classroom.