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Finance course to add value for real world

A new focus area in finance will soon give undergraduate students in that department a boost toward careers in financial planning.

Dr. Naomi Boyd

Dr. Naomi Boyd, with the help of Drs. William Riley and Terry Rose, has designed a new curriculum track for finance students that will help them bridge the gap between classroom theory and client relations.

“We had the sense that our undergraduates weren’t sure of where they wanted to go when they graduated,” Dr. Boyd said. “A large percentage of them goes into financial services, and we wanted to offer them more direction, greater experience with actual one-on-one client work, and a better understanding of how financial theory is applied in the real world.”

The track will include much of the same coursework as the regular, undergraduate finance curriculum, but will allow students to take new electives that emphasize case studies on how financial planners help their clients with comprehensive individual or family financial planning.

The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) Board of Standards approved the curriculum as a board certified financial planning program in February, which will allow students who complete the program to meet the educational requirements to sit for the certified financial planner exam. Students will begin taking the new courses this fall and are required to show that they can create a comprehensive financial plan for an individual or family in order to graduate, Boyd said.

This month she is presenting "Bridging the Gap: From Theory to Application,” a synopsis of the new curriculum, at the CFP 2010 Program Director’s Conference in Washington, D.C.