Finance Programs in Louisiana
Louisiana, home of Mardi Gras, has 23 schools that offer finance programs. There are 14 different schools that offer Associate's degrees in finance and 15 schools that have Bachelor's degrees in finance. Fifteen schools have Master's programs in finance, and ten schools offer doctorate-level degrees in finance. There is one school in Louisiana, the American School of Business, that has a certificate in finance.
There are many excellent finance programs in Louisiana; the top three in the state are at Louisiana State University – Shreveport, McNeese State University, and Tulane University. Louisiana State University – Shreveport has the most affordable tuition of the lot, at just over $2,810 per semester for residents and just over $3,700 per semester for non-residents.
Louisiana students that pursue an Associate's degree in finance will spend about two years in school if they go full-time and four years if they go part-time. Students have to take some general education classes, including composition, speech communication, and algebra. Specific finance courses include Principles of Microeconomics, Introduction to Financial Accounting, Finance, and Business Law.
When you pursue a Bachelor's degree in finance, you will have to spend about four years in school as a full-time student. Louisiana students can choose from Bachelor's degrees in finance or Bachelor's degrees in business with a focus in finance. A Bachelor's degree in finance often offers students the chance to choose a specialty. For instance, Louisiana State University – Shreveport requires students to choose between Financial Analysis and Financial Services as a specialty. Here, students take classes like Advanced Business Finance, Money and Banking, Aggregate Economic Analysis, and Principles of Real Estate.
At Tulane University, students can pursue a Bachelor's degree in finance. This degree was recognized by Financial Times as one of the top 10 finance schools. Tulane also offers a Master's degree in finance. They also have a Master's in Business Administration with a concentration in finance. This allows students to finish their undergraduate studies and go right into a graduate level program if they so choose.
A Master's degree in finance takes the average student two years to complete. However, certain programs, including the one at Tulane, offer intensive programs that take less than a year to complete. Many Louisiana schools offer specialties within a Master's degree in finance. Students can specialize in Asset Management, Real Estate, Energy, or Investment Banking.
While many financial careers do not require licensure, there are quite a few that do. Most careers that an Associate's degree holder can pursue do not require a license; these are typically entry-level careers. However, many Bachelor's and Master's degree careers do require you to get a license before working. In Louisiana, the three main careers that require licensure are investment advisor, stockbroker, and life insurance producer.
To become an investment advisor in Louisiana, you have to register with the Louisiana Securities Division. Prior to registration and licensure, you must pass an exam. You can either pass the Uniform Investment Advisor exam or the General Securities Representative exam in addition to the Uniform Combined State Law exam.
Working as a stockbroker in Louisiana means that you must register with the Louisiana Securities Division. However, you must first pass the Series 6 or 7 exam—whichever one is relevant for the products you plan on selling. Additionally, you must pass the Series 63 or 66 exam. After receiving initial licensure, stockbrokers must keep up with continuing education requirements. This includes the Regulatory Element and the Firm Element. The Regulatory Element must be done after two years and then every three years. It involves taking a refresher course. The Firm Element is unique to each stockbroker firm.
Life insurance producers and financial planners are regulated by the Louisiana Department of Insurance. Applicants must complete 20 hours of pre-licensing education. After becoming licensed, insurance producers must finish 24 hours of ongoing education every two years.
There are numerous finance employment opportunities for graduates in Louisiana. Finance professionals who are interested in working as an investment advisor can work in an investment firm. Some of the biggest firms in Louisiana are Ameriprise Financial, the Mutual Fund Store, Evans Investment Advisors, and Resource Management, Inc. Other major finance employers in Republic Finance, New York Life Insurance Company, and Fisher Investments.
Salaries for professionals with Bachelor's or Master's degrees in finance are in line with average national salaries. Salaries range from $39,160 for credit counselors to $83,300 for financial examiners. Associate's degree holders may work as auditing clerks, financial clerks, and payroll clerks. Salaries for these careers range from $30,240 to $43,400.