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A Guide to Finance Majors

by Chethan G

The finance major requires the student to learn how to think critically and communicate effectively in all types of environments. The finance major usually combines liberal arts with
math, business with accounting and statistics. The finance major prepares students to be leaders, problem solvers and innovators. The finance majors are highly trained to compete with other liberal arts or science majors. Many finance majors collect and analyze economic data and then prepare reports on trends and current financial status used to evaluate the needs for policy changes in government regulation. They also prepare reports on the current state of the financial markets as well as plans and strategies for the future of the financial markets.

The major in finance is also well suited for a career in investment banking because the knowledge they gain can help them in making investment decisions. Many students choose to enter a career in corporate finance where they will be an integral part of the financial decisions that are made about investing in mergers and acquisitions. In addition, the student may choose to pursue careers in financial planning, investment management and even government loans and grants.

The curriculum for a course in finance at a four-year university is very similar to a degree in finance. The first two years of college study generally include general education courses such as English composition, mathematics, computer science and social sciences. Students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours to graduate. A good undergraduate GPA will increase your chance for employment at a higher level when applying for jobs after graduation. The main area of study in finance majors is financial management. The major focuses on the process of generating and evaluating financial information and then presenting that information to decision makers. The financial management major prepares students to design and manage financial programs, projects and organizations. Students should have excellent problem-solving skills as well as analytical thinking.

At the end of the curriculum in finance, students will earn a bachelor’s degree in financial management. The bachelor’s degree may also be completed in a two-year program. Students can then take up to four years to complete a master’s degree in financial management. The requirements for the bachelor’s degree include four years of classroom-based study, at least one year in a clinical setting and an additional year of coursework, which may be taken online or in person. for a combination of classroom study and clinical experience. In order to obtain the bachelor’s degree, students must pass a written exam and a competency examination. Once the student passes both these tests and earns a bachelor’s degree, he or she can then apply to an undergraduate program. The degree can be earned in a year and students may choose to finish it in two years or more. Students may also complete master’s degrees in financial management in three years and four years.

Financial accounting is an essential course for the finance major. This course is required in every undergraduate program. Courses in financial accounting cover general principles of accounting; managerial accounting; budgeting, financial analysis and forecasting; business operations; public accounting; financial statement analysis; bookkeeping; business law; and managerial economics.
Students who earn their bachelor’s degree in finance also receive a number of career options.

Upon completion of the degree program, students are prepared to enter the work force as accountants, finance managers, investment counselors or consultants. These professionals may choose to open their own firms or work with an accounting firm. For those who choose this career path, they may select from several different positions such as private practice, corporate finance, consulting, investment banking and public accounting. Some graduates choose careers in financial services as well as these positions may require strong interpersonal skills and analytical skills. There are also several opportunities in investment banking and insurance. With the demand for people who have a love for finance, there are plenty of jobs available in the financial industry. These careers often lead to a high salary and great job satisfaction.

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