University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign University of Illinois Sesquicentennial College of ACES
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Financial Planning

Students in this concentration study finance and economics as they apply to individuals, households, and small businesses in the course of accumulating and using financial resources.

Students are introduced to issues of credit management, insurance and other risk management strategies, saving and investing, retirement planning, and estate planning.

  • Nationally prominent companies in this area seeking both interns and well-trained graduates include State Farm Insurance, Prudential Financial Companies, Northwestern Mutual Financial Network, and Ameriprise Financial.
  • Students find jobs as a Certified Financial Planner™, insurance agent, broker, claims agent, underwriter, personal or commercial banker, investment advisor, credit counselor, or consumer investigator.
  • Internships held during the college years can be important stepping-stones towards a career in the financial planning sector.
  • All students who graduate with a degree in Financial Planning from the University of Illinois' Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics are eligible to sit for the national CFP™ exam administered by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc.
  • Specific courses required include Intro to Insurance (FIN 230), Personal Financial Planning (240), Tax Policy and Financial Planning (346) and Financial Planning for Professionals (440).

See current requirements

For more information about the Financial Planning Program, please contact:
Caroline Helton, Academic Advisor
304b Mumford Hall
1301 W. Gregory
Urbana Illinois 61801
(217) 300-4825
chelton@illinois.edu

Career Opportunity Spotlight

Financial Planner, Balasa Diverno Foltz LLC (BDF)

Baili Roy 

Job Description: BDF is an independent, fee-only wealth management firm that provides comprehensive financial planning and investment management for its clients. As a planner, Baili Roy is responsible for reviewing and compiling client data, running retirement projections and financial scenarios, conducting asset class research, and reviewing trades.

For Baili Roy, developing meaningful relationships with clients is one of the most rewarding parts of her role as a financial planner. Financial planning requires a unique blend of technical and interpersonal skills, and Baili says her coursework at the U of I provided her with both the background knowledge and communication practices to succeed in the field.  She also says that the program saved her thousands of dollars in additional coursework to become a Certified Financial Planner™.

“The financial planning program at the U of I is unique in that is a CFP® Board Certified Program. This means that upon graduation, I had completed all the academic requires to be eligible to sit for the CFP® Certification exam,” she says.

The certification, along with additional professional development opportunities at the U of I, prepared Baili for a career focused on keeping clients’ best interests in mind by providing sound advice to reach their goals.

“The Financial Planning Club was a great resource for building my network and connecting with employers in the fee-only financial planning space,” she says. “I also served as a peer educator with the University of Illinois Extension Financial Wellness Program, which gave me experience communicating the importance of financial literacy.”

Baili says being a part of both a large university and a small academic program provided her with the best of both worlds. “So many things make U of I an incredible academic institution,” she says. “And being part of a smaller, more personal program allowed me to know my professors and classmates individually.”

Bali says that her time at the U of I taught her to be unafraid of pushing her comfort zone when it comes to professional development. “Nerves, frustration, and confusion regarding career choices are normal.  The only way to improve is to keep trying!”

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