Bauer College’s Program for Financial Literacy Recognized for Campus, Community Impact
One of the country’s leading brokers recently awarded the Program for Financial Literacy at the University of Houston C. T. Bauer College of Business with a $50,000 grant and recognition as a leader in educating young professionals for the industry.
TD Ameritrade Institutional presented Bauer College its NextGen Grant earlier this month during a celebration in New York City that included a visit to Nasdaq Market Center to help ring the closing bell.
“We are honored by the award from TD Ameritrade and eager to use the funding to expand the great work that is already being done through Bauer College’s Program for Financial Literacy,” said Dean Latha Ramchand.
She added: “This program began just three years ago, and through the commitment of Bauer College faculty and staff, including Associate Dean Frank Kelley and program director Joyce Williams, we have been able to make an impact in the Houston community and support the growing need in the business community for skilled professionals.”
The annual grant program aims to address an employment gap in the registered investment advisor profession — according to TD Ameritrade Institutional, because the demand for fiduciary advice is growing, with millions of baby boomers preparing for retirement and younger investors in their prime earning years building and inheriting trillions in wealth, there aren’t enough people entering the profession to replace older advisors currently dominating the ranks of the business and reaching retirement age themselves.
Bauer College administrators have heard the industry’s call and are answering with a robust program in financial planning for business students, Kelley said.
“Over the next 10 years, there is a projected 27 percent increase in demand for jobs in the industry,” Kelley said. “Companies like TD Ameritrade are interested in promoting personal financial planning as a career choice, and they’re looking to programs like ours to recruit and hire graduates.”
Bauer’s Program for Financial Literacy provides students an accelerated path to becoming a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) through undergraduate coursework that meets the CFP Board of Standards education requirement for certification.
In addition to focusing on curricular relevance for the industry, the college’s Program for Financial Literacy provides outreach for low and middle income students and families, giving Bauer staff and students opportunities to present to approximately 3,000 students each year.
Bauer College also hosts an annual Financial Symposium for the community each April as part of Houston Money Week, with participants from the Texas Council on Economic Education, the Federal Reserve and the FDIC, along with several nonprofit financial literacy organizations and representatives from banking and financial services.
The outreach happens off-campus, too, Kelley added. Through Houston-area schools and community centers, staff and students provide financial information and services. UH is located in the Third Ward, one of the lowest income areas per capita in Houston. Bauer College has special outreach programs that incorporate financial literacy for schools in the surrounding neighborhood such as at Edison Middle School. Some of the past events have included Lemonade Day and financial literacy using tools such as Texas Reality Check. This summer, Bauer College’s EXPLORE high school institutes also included presentations on how to pay for college and money management.
Even with all of the work already being done through the established program, the college sees the opportunity to do more, Kelley said.
“Through the grant, we’re going to expand our outreach as a college,” he added.
The grant funding, Kelley said, will be used to increase the amount of financial workshops for students, hire additional staff and sponsor the annual Bauer Financial Symposium, slated next year for April 8.
To learn more about the Program for Financial Literacy, click here.
By Priscilla Aceves & Jessica Navarro