Undergraduate Finance Major

Finance graduates have one of the highest placement rates among new GVSU graduates. The finance program provides you with an understanding of financial definitions, concepts, relationships, and strategies involving individuals, financial institutions, and non-financial business activities. This 18-credit hour program recognizes that finance is becoming an increasingly complex and critical area in the overall management of all types of institutions--business and others--and for individuals as well.

Career Opportunities

Most new finance graduates are employed in the careers described below.

Banking Institutions
Banking institutions hire between one-third and one-half of finance graduating seniors. The most common starting positions are credit analyst and branch manager trainee, banks fill a wide variety of positions with new finance graduates. Credit analysts study firms' financial reports to identify strengths and weaknesses and then write a summary report to bank lenders. If you are interested in credit analyst positions you need to be a good writer. You should complete two or three accounting courses beyond the required business core, and you must maintain a good grade point average. Typically, credit analysts become commercial lenders after two or three years as an analyst.

Brokerage Account Representatives
Once called stockbrokers, these positions include a complete range of financial services. The work is exciting and fast-paced. It requires excellent telephone skills and the ability to make quick decisions. Brokerage houses support new finance graduates with training programs to help them become licensed at state and federal levels, to learn about the brokerage industry, and to keep current on recommended investments.

Financial Planners
Financial planning is the process of helping people safeguard their assets while they are working toward achieving their financial goals. Life insurance and mutual fund sales are the backbone of financial planners. Good interpersonal communication skills are essential in this career. Many financial planning companies provide internship programs for students desiring a career in this field.

Other positions
Finance graduates often begin their careers in areas not normally considered to be directly related to finance. In fact, most businesses do not have a major preference when interviewing for business graduates. As a result, finance majors also find jobs such as manager trainees and sales representatives.

Required Courses

In addition to the BBA CORE requirements, as a Finance major, you must take 18-credit hours as follows:

  • FIN 321 Investments
  • FIN 322 Intermediate Finance
  • FIN 422 Advanced Managerial Finance

And three courses from the following list, with at least one of the three being a finance course:

  • FIN 331 Risk and Insurance
  • FIN 350 Real Estate Principles
  • FIN 380 Seminar in Finance
  • FIN 420 Bank Management
  • FIN 428 Security Analysis and Portfolio Management
  • FIN 429 International Financial Management
  • FIN 490 Finance Internship
  • FIN 499 Independent Research
  • ACC 310 Intermediate Accounting I
  • ACC 311 Intermediate Accounting II
  • ACC 318 Federal Income Tax-Corporations, Partnerships and Fiduciaries
  • ACC 321 Cost Accounting I
  • ACC 322 Cost Accounting II
  • ECO 312 Applied Microeconomics
  • ECO 313 Business Cycles and Growth
  • ECO 414 Money and Banking
  • ECO 480 Econometrics and Forecasting


Finance Course Descriptions

Contact Information:
Department Phone: (616) 331-7390
Email Susan Edwards, Department Chair: edwardss@gvsu.edu


Page last modified February 19, 2014