Finance is a field lush with great earning potential and rewarding career options in a wide range of industries. The field has seen large growth despite recent economic downturn, so it’s a little more guaranteed than other fields. There are definitely more than five reasons why studying finance is a smart choice for potential students, but we’ve compiled a list of the most pertinent reasons to help you decide which program of study is right for you! The reasons below touch on areas that are going to emphasize perks for the career-driven individual who is looking to implement exciting changes to their life in beneficial ways.
1. Narrow Focus
If you’re interested in a business career then you have an array of college degree options such as business, accounting, or management. One great reason to become a finance major is because of it’s more narrow focus, but it still allows you to explore a field that is dense with job opportunities.
A finance degree allows you to work with the decision makers of outside organizations. Examples of these organizations include: banks, government agencies, stockholders, suppliers, businesses, and more. Being able to distinguish yourself with a finance degree will help you when searching for jobs, especially from a large number of business majors. As a finance degree is harder to attain, it’s guaranteed to set you apart.
2. Personality Driven
Anyone can get a business degree or do accounting, but in order to be in a finance career you must be outgoing and inquisitive. Though you’ll need to be good at mathematics, you also must be good and talking with people and making friendly conversation on a variety of subjects. Therefore education, intelligence, and personality are all taken into account for finance jobs. Additionally, you must be diplomatic and consider your organization’s or client’s goals, resources, and options when discussing their options for financial growth and well-being.
3. Growing Job Prospects
According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, due to a “growing range of financial products and the need for in-depth knowledge of geographic regions” finance positions are growing faster than the average for employment in the United States.
For example, careers in financial analysis are to grow by 23 percent, financial management by 14 percent, and financial advising by 32 percent. The opportunities will continue to present themselves as the economy continues to recover. As a with any major, it’s important to keep a focus on what it’s like in the job market upon graduation and it’s very fortunate that things look promising for those in this major.
4. Wide Variety of Job Opportunities
As you can see above, finance careers are growing. This also means that the variety of careers opportunities are growing as well. With a finance degree you can work in:
- Corporate management
- International financial management
- Investment services
- Financial planning services
- Personal financial planning for individuals and private organizations
- Brokerage firms
- Insurance companies
- Commercial and investment banks
- Credit unions and private banks
As well as many other financial intermediary companies all employ finance graduates.
5. Financially Rewarding Careers
In addition to having a wide range of job opportunities, the jobs that present themselves to you will also be very rewarding from a salary standpoint. Salary information varies from job title and experience, but the following are a few baseline ideas of the average salary you can earn with a finance degree:
The job market has underwent some large changes in the past decade, partly due to different technological innovations and partly because of the economy. Finance majors are placed into a very fortunate position that keeps options available to continue to grow unhindered from many circumstances that have impacted others.
Featured Online Finance Programs
|BSBA - FinanceDBA - Finance||Liberty University – Liberty University is an online school with over 90 campuses in the United States. If you don’t live near a campus, you can also take advantage of their online degrees that can be completed using any modern computer. Lberty offers distance learning programs for an BSBA and DBA in Finance. |
|MBA - FinanceBA - Finance||Ashford University – For students wanting tradition, history, and a well-respected reputation, Ashford University is a popular choice for online programs. The school, located in San Diego, California, offers two degrees in finance: the MBA and BBA in Finance. While the MBA is more suited for students with degrees and experience, the BA program can help you start your career. Ashford University is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), 985 Atlantic Avenue, Suite 100, Alameda, CA 94501, 510-748-9001, wascsenior.org. |
|MBA - FinanceMS - FinanceBSBA - Financial Analysis||Kaplan University – With over 70 campuses across the country, Kaplan University remains one of the most popular schools for education, especially in the online realm. Their programs such as the MBA or MS in Finance take a results-oriented approach to education, not only teaching students the skills they need but how to utilize them as well. |
|DBA - Finance||Walden University – Walden University is one of the most recognized and trusted names in higher learning. Walden offers multiple finance degrees including a DBA, MBA, and BSBA. Each program is geared towards students at different points in their careers, but all of them can be completed entirely online with no on-site time required. |
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Or did you go into the industry to pay off college debt quickly, get a fat pay check, live in NYC and think you were going to become a millionaire.
And for the college students: Did your parents make you choose the finance major, or did you actually want to study it because you enjoy it. (or are you solely doing it for the money)
Seems to me like everyone i have talked to (both student and in the industry) have entered the industry for the money or the possibility of becoming a millionaire.
Why did you pursue finance?
For students or those pursuing a change of career - this can be a serious question. Below is some commentary and advice from users who faced this same question.
Money Isn't Everything
While money is the first thing that jumps to minds of many users - some users caution against pursuing finance with money as your sole motivation.
User @BSDBANKER shared:
The "Money" incentive only goes so far...Yes, it will help you sleep at night and take a lot of financial stresses off your shoulders, however if you are not passionate and enjoy your day-to-day job you will quickly find yourself being miserable.
Granted a job in finance is one of the few jobs that will return the money spent on higher education. Be passionate and love what you do and the money will come. The money is nice, but is not the sole nor the primary reason for my decision to enter the world of finance.
Many Users Pursued Finance because they Enjoyed the Work....
User @D M explained:
I think it also depends on what you're doing. I can see someone (hypothetically) working 70 hours per week as a PM at a hedge fund and enjoying the hell out of it. The analytical nature of it is so intriguing, and that's what gets to me. Similarly, I could see the college athlete or poker playing type type loving the trading game, going for that adrenaline rush. You're also not working 100 hours per week 99% of the time unless you are in, say, one of the top IB groups in the world.
@SalGr likes the entrepreneurial nature:
If I wanted just money I would stay in the family business. Financial markets are my passion. Plus becoming a trader is like becoming an enterpreneuer,your pay is related to your performance (unlike many other fields). Oh, and you dont have to wait till you you get 50 to get paid well...
@BSDBANKER shared that:
Completely agree...its much more than the money for people who are passionate and successful. ITS ALL ABOUT PLAYING THE GAME.
@baddebt88 likes the meritocracy of finance / Wall Street based careers:
I have wanted to be a trader since freshman year of high school. I always thought I would be a chemistry researcher but then realized what a clusterf*ck the grant process was. After that I thought maybe being a lawyer would be sick. Law and Order looked pretty boss. I realized after a short internship at a law firm that most lawyers are miserable. Being on the math team, I came across a math problem that used an options based question. Googled it, got real interested, got an internship at a trading firm in high school, absolutely loved it, and haven't doubted my decision since.
The biggest draw about trading to me is that its the one thing (other than pro poker) where its about about performance. Your pay/rank is directly dependent on your production. Considering I am an immigrant with a chip on my shoulder, there is nothing else I would do.
While @D M touched on why some people actually like hedge fund / markets oriented work, @monkeyc shared that fun part of investment banking comes later down the line for some people:
I think there is a point (SVP/Director) [where you have fun as an investment banker]. Once you actually have clients of your own, and an team to run. Some people just love running and closing deals. The problem is not really that there is no rewarding components, it's that they come much later in your career and only accrue to the few that make it up a pyramid that doesn't really promote on merit.
... But for Some, the Money was Critical
While some users find some level of enjoyment in their work @TropicalFruit shared that their sole motivation was the money:
I was never passionate about anything (besides a generic interest in anything quantitative), but since I was a kid I've always wanted to be obscenely rich. I grew up in a frugal-ass household where my mom always complained about lack of money, and my dad prob makes less than a 1st year analyst on the street. I guess my mom's complaining instilled in me a strong desire to get rich. Sure I'll probably never be a multimillionaire, but it's the possibility that keeps me going. I couldn't work as an engineer knowing that the most I'll ever make is around $150k/year (unless I start my own business) while a dumber friend of mine is making millions b/c he chose finance.
I find finance interesting because of the money. If finance paid the same as engineering and engineering paid the same as finance, then I sure as hell wouldn't give a flying fuck about finance and would be on EngineeringOasis instead. If you're genuinely passionate about finance, good for you, but please spare me the "you shouldn't be in finance for the money" bullshit. If all jobs paid the same salary, I'd become a music producer or something.
Why Finance Interview Question?
While it is important to figure out why you are personally pursuing finance, sometimes that answer isn't what you should say if you are interviewing. Check out our guide to answering this question here.
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