What Can You Do With a Bachelors in Finance?

A bachelor's degree program in finance prepares graduates for many entry-level jobs, including financial planner, portfolio manager, and financial analyst. Find out what other paths finance students can consider with a bachelor's degree. View article »

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Video Transcript

Opportunities With a Finance Degree

Here you can learn about some of the options for individuals with a bachelor's degree in finance. We explore these options in depth and look at some potential careers.

A bachelor's degree in finance can open many doors for graduates, including access to entry-level positions in finance and business, certification as a finance professional, and preparation for graduate programs. Entry-level positions and graduate programs can be pursued right after graduation from a bachelor's degree program, whereas some certifications may require work experience in addition to a degree. Undergraduate finance majors learn about various subjects, such as long-term financial planning, cost control, and sound investing. Typical college courses include accounting, statistics, financial markets, international finance, and financial statement analysis.

Entry-Level Finance Jobs

While students have the option of pursuing either a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Finance, both degree programs lead to the same entry-level positions. A Bachelor of Arts in Finance program offers students a broader liberal arts approach to studying finance than a Bachelor of Science program.

Finance majors often find employment opportunities in such areas as banking, investments, and financial services. Typical employers include securities and commodities brokers, banks, insurance carriers, government agencies, and real estate companies. Some entry-level positions in finance include:

  • Bank branch manager
  • Commercial lender
  • Financial analyst
  • Financial manager
  • Financial planner
  • Portfolio manager
  • Security analyst
  • Trust manager

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Banking Related Services
  • Credit Management
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  • Investments and Securities
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Finance Certifications

Although it may not necessarily be a requirement, many positions encourage applicants to seek certification. Working as a financial analyst, for example, may require a Chartered Financial Analyst designation. A bachelor's degree in finance is required for most certifications, and several years of work experience may be needed prior to becoming certified. Certification programs include, but aren't limited to, the Certified Public Finance Officer, Certified Management Accountant, and Certified Healthcare Financial Professional designations.

Graduate Study

Laying the foundation for graduate school is especially important, since many corporate employers prefer or even require applicants to hold a master's degree in finance. Students continuing their studies at the graduate level qualify for advanced job opportunities. A finance background lends itself to other graduate studies, including public administration, law, and business. Upper-level career options exist in:

  • Corporate finance
  • Corporate treasury
  • Credit analysis
  • Equity research
  • Risk management

Those with a bachelor's degree in finance can pursue entry-level careers in the field, finance certifications, or graduate study. Students will be prepared for any of these options with their background in accounting, financial markets, financial planning, and more.

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