7 Courses Finance Students Should Take
If you’re interested in pursuing a career in finance, you are likely to experience a great variety of benefits. Careers in the finance industry are often high-paying and offer a pretty balanced work and life balance, especially for those who start young and later pursue independent employment.
Further, the finance sector is widely diverse and provides a variety of career options, not to mention that there are a plethora of opportunities for growth and advancement, especially in larger firms.
And quite frankly, there will always be a need for financial professionals since everything that we do to live involves some form of monetary payment or trade.
But if you are looking to get into finance, there are some core finance-related courses and skills that you should consider fundamental to your education, regardless of what is required by your financial institution.
Top finance courses for finance students
If you are in the finance world, you know that you can’t just take a few classes at the beginning of your career and move on. The financial world is changing every day, and while there may be less traditional finance support needed in the future, the trend is that this is a career space that won’t be going away anytime soon.
1. Investment banking
Investment bankers provide guidance to companies on what kind of securities to issue. This can include stocks or bonds as well as how, when, and at what price to issue those securities. These financial professionals also handle placement of the securities with various investors; this process is known as underwriting.
Investment bankers work with private and publicly traded companies to underwrite municipal bonds and other types of debt securities.
In an investment banking course, students will learn about valuations, investment banking modeling, comparable company analysis (CCA), leveraged-buyout (LBO) modeling, mergers and acquisitions (M&A) modeling, pitch book preparation, and communications and presentations skills.
2. Financial modeling
Students who study financial modeling will learn how to value a business and present it to their clients.
They also learn to create complex models, offering them the ability to showcase and demonstrate complexity in thinking and analysis, a skill that future customers will more than appreciate.
Further, financial modeling courses are usually required for careers in investment banking, equity research, business valuations, transaction advisory, etc.
3. Equity research
These courses teach students the skills to recommend investments for their clients, as well as how to create reports and charts for possible investment opportunities.
Those who take these courses can often set themselves up for future advancement, as this is an extra skill that not all financial professionals have.
4. Private equity
Students that study private equity learn how private equity firms operate, as well as how to target a company that can be bought out. Not only that, students learn how to turn around a struggling company into one that is profitable.
These courses are excellent for finance students who want to expand on their business valuation, deal structuring, fundraising, financial modeling, and negotiations skills.
5. Venture capital
Venture capital is financing that investors contribute to new start-up organizations and other small companies that are believed to have long-term growth potential.
Thus, these courses help students to understand early-stage entrepreneurship, how to get more ROI out of a start-up or new small business and to identify and understand the pitfalls and risks in investing in an early-stage venture.
6. Hedge funds
These funds are investments designed to protect investment portfolios in uncertain markets while creating positive returns in both up and down markets.
These courses are critical for students to learn how hedge funds are run globally. And, students learn how money is managed via hedge fund managers, and how to earn returns, and of course, how to appropriately invest in hedge funds.
7. Credit modeling
Any financial professional needs to understand credit modeling and how to ascertain levels of financial risk and credit worthiness.
When students take these courses, they learn various applications of credit risk modeling and how it can aid in financial advisory.
Additionally, students learn about credit training, implementation of credit models, support invalidation, benchmarking, etc.
Finance requires ongoing education and improvement
To stay on top of the industry and be a trusted financial resource for customers, those in the finance space can’t assume that coursework completed early in their career will be satisfactory for the long haul.
Finance professionals need to stay on top of legislation and regulatory requirements as well as changes in investment trends and the unique needs of various sectors within the population.
Therefore, continued education in finance and related topics will set apart one financial professional from another.
Plus, these skills that finance professionals hone through work experience and continued education can be applied across more than just the financial industry.
In fact, all industries need professionals that are skilled in key components of banking, insurance, cyber-security, financial research and more. And while many theorists believe that traditional finance professionals are on the decline, the opposite is true.
Instead, financial professionals are taking their educations and skills and applying those talents to technology, telecommunications, and other spaces that require this particular expertise.
In a world of automation, it is true that many finance-related tasks can be managed through robotic process automation (RPA) and machine learning, but these systems don’t create themselves.
RPA and financial platform technology is designed and developed by the very financial professionals that have serviced customers in the past and have seen what works in the market, what businesses need to succeed, and more.
Financial experience built into platform technology
Comarch provides a wealth of products in the financial space, designed for small and medium-sized businesses. Services range across banking, insurance, cyber-security, and research.
What distinguishes Comarch from competitors is a constant drive for improvement, and that we cater to more than 100 clients, process two million new insurance policies a month, and boast a regular presence in IT analyst ratings – from IDC to Gartner.
By keeping close tabs on business challenges of the finance world, our team of financial profess~ionals learn and grow each day, and ensure that knowledge is built into our products.
We believe good financial software can make an impactful difference for any business enterprise.