Financial strategy and knowledge is vital if you want to plan the financial future of any organization regardless of its size. This particular sector is also essential for personal companies or small businesses seeking consulting services.
Financial planning degree programs provide the skills and knowledge needed for planning the financial future of any business. Pursuing a financial planning program is possible almost anywhere in the world since many colleges world wide offer the same type of courses. There is also room for flexibility as many of the colleges have on campus training as well as online learning. This page explains what the courses are, what employers expect, and what you can expect to earn. You might also like to check out the pages on Finance and Accounting.
What is studied in a financial planning program?
To get a clearer picture of a typical program outline, it is important to understand that the course offers core units of financial planning, insurance units, commercial law units and financial markets units. A typical financial planning program comprises core units, which make up the bulk of the program, and a small number of electives. The degree you take will most likely include courses on: principles of finance, personal finance, money markets, investment management, risk management and real estate finance.
Certification in finance is required by most employers of financial planners. To become a Certified Financial Planner (CFP), you need to pass a suitable financial planning program, pass the CFP exams, and follow a strict code of ethics.
Other certifications relevant to this field include Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC); Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA); Certified Management Accountant (CMA); Certified Cash Manager; and, Certified Public Accountant (CPA).
What are the prospects for graduates?
Let us start by looking at the opportunities that will be open to your exploitation upon successful completion of the degree in financial planning, considering the fact that financial planning careers are many and varied, ranging from the advisory roles to stock broking among many others. Your financial planning education will adequately equip you with the relevant skills to handle these challenges appropriately.
The demand for these particular skills upon graduation is almost guaranteed considering the fact that this knowledge is always a part of any one who seeks prosperity in business. As the economic markets continue to grow every day, we can clearly notice the stock markets gaining international stature and more investors are demanding the services of qualified personnel to help them exploit investment opportunities world wide.
The main advantage of working in this sector upon graduation is the fact that you have many opportunities open to you. You can work for as many individuals or small companies as you can handle and therefore increase your income potential. You may wish to set up a personal consulting company to be able to exploit your full potential and maximise your income.
When working in companies, the level of earning will depend on the level of the qualification you have, i.e., whether it is a certificate in financial planning, a bacheors or a graduate degree in financial planning. For fairly new graduates of a financial planning masters program, the average salary is about $100,000 per year, this figure of course varies upwards or downwards depending on the particular company and location. A PhD in financial planning can help get one of the top jobs in a company, or as faculty in a university or college. As one gets more experience and exposure, the earning potential also increases just like in other sectors.
List of schools and programs