Finance

Why Finance?

Finance majors learn money management skills valuable to businesses, organizations, and individuals. Finance graduates consistently rank among the highest average starting salary for any undergraduate major. In addition, opportunities exist in a wide range of specific financial fields. Real estate and personal financial planning are ideal for those with strong interpersonal skills who enjoy working with people. Meanwhile, financial analysis and risk management cater to those with strong analytical and mathematical backgrounds.

What can I expect as a finance major at SAU?

In the first two years, students will take a broad range of classes both in the College of Business and across campus. General education courses and lower level business courses such as Economics and Principles of Accounting will prepare students for the more advanced upper level classes. During this time, students will be assigned a member of the Finance faculty as an advisor to help with class scheduling, professional mentoring, and career placement.

The upper level core courses – such as Financial Institutions and Markets, Investments, and Advanced Financial Management – focus on developing financial literacy and analysis skills. These skills are further developed and applied in upper level electives such as Real Estate Appraisal, Estate Planning, and Advanced Financial Planning.

What can I do with my SAU  finance degree?

The SAU College of Business has a strong record of job placement for finance graduates. The majority of SAU finance graduates provide personal financial services such as retirement planning and insurance, while many others work with brokerage firms and investment banks in financial analysis and sales positions. SAU finance alumni currently work for local businesses like Farmers Bank & Trust, Fortune 500 firms such as Murphy Oil, and large government agencies like the Social Security Administration. In addition, graduates with an interest in entrepreneurship find financial skills critical to opening and running small businesses in other fields.

For those interested in surpassing their undergraduate degree, the College of Business is a great place to prepare for and complete graduate studies such as an MBA. SAU is also one of four institutions in Arkansas to offer preparation for the prestigious Certified Financial Planner designation. In fact, SAU was the first college in the state to offer a CFP preparatory program.

What is unique about the SAU finance program?

We offer a traditional finance program and a financial planning program. Students will take finance courses, such as financial management, investment, retirement planning, and insurance, offered by professors with real-world experiences. Students will also have the opportunity to manage an investment fund and acquire hands-on experience in security research, valuation of risky assets, asset allocation, and portfolio management. Upon graduation, our students are ready to work independently for a financial institution or assist clients in financial planning. Our graduates are hired by prestigious financial companies such as Merrill Lynch, Edward Jones, Washington Mutual Funds, etc.


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