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Finance Programs and Careers in Georgia

This guide to finance programs in Georgia includes information to help you decide which finance program is best for your educational background, lifestyle, and career aspirations. Prospective finance students in Georgia can benefit from the variety of programs available, from traditional bachelor’s and master’s in finance programs to Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs with concentrations in finance. Select schools offer online finance programs to provide students with greater flexibility in earning a degree. Continue reading to learn more about finance careers and salaries as well as profiles of select Georgia finance programs.

Quick Facts

For not-for-profit colleges and universities with finance degree programs.

Table of Contents
Comparison of Finance Programs
Top-Ranked Schools with Finance Programs in Georgia
Select Schools in Georgia with Finance Degrees
Georgia Finance Careers and Salary Outlook
Finance Associations in Georgia

Georgia Finance Program Comparison

We have developed the following table to help you compare all of the finance programs in Georgia from not-for-profit schools that offer programs with a concentration in finance. In addition to allowing you to compare the business school’s accreditation, finance degrees that appear in bold are Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Institute University Affiliation Programs, those that have been recognized for curricula aligned to preparing for the CFA Exam.

School NameAccreditationFinance Degree(s)Acceptance Rate6Grad Rate1Online Options?Median Debt7Net Price1
Augusta UniversityAACSBBBA-Financial ServicesN.Av.40%$11,869$10,877
Berry CollegeAACSBBS-Finance100%69%$19,000$25,192
Brenau UniversityACBSPMS-Organizational Leadership in Finance;
MBA-Finance;
Grad Cert-Finance
N.Av.46%Yes$15,500$21,438
Columbus State UniversityAACSBBBA-Finance;
Minor-Actuarial Science;
Certificate-FinTech
76.9%38%$15,750$11,361
Dalton State CollegeAACSBBBA-Finance and Applied Economics;
Minor-Finance;
Minor-Financial Technology
N.Av.25%$6,750$6,697
Emory UniversityAACSBBBA-Finance;
Certificate-Real Estate;
MBA-Corporate Finance;
MBA-Global Financial Reporting Analysis
49.7%90%Yes$18,222$25,942
Georgia Institute of TechnologyAACSBBSBA-Finance;
Certificate-Finance;
MBA-Finance;
MBA-Quantitative Finance;
MS-Quantitative & Computational Finance
40.1%90%$21,500$16,883
Georgia Southern UniversityAACSBBBA-FinanceN.Av.50%$17,029$15,374
Georgia State UniversityAACSBBBA-Finance;
MS-Finance;
MBA-Finance
N.Av.55%$12,500$14,136
Kennesaw State UniversityAACSBBBA-FinanceN.Av.46%N.Av.$17,175
Mercer UniversityAACSBBBA-Finance;
BBA-Finance: Risk Management and Insurance
80.6%66%$21,350$21,696
Piedmont CollegeACBSPBA-FinanceN.Av.45%$15,681$19,715
University of GeorgiaAACSBBBA-Finance;
MBA-Finance;
MBA-Financial Technology;
MS-Financial Planning
41%87%$17,108$15,961
University of North GeorgiaAACSBBBA-FinanceN.Av.38%$8,251$10,730
University of West GeorgiaAACSBBBA-FinanceN.Av.45%$12,750$15,235
Valdosta State UniversityAACSBBBA-FinanceN.Av.40%$15,750$13,502

  • — indicates none.
  • N.Av. indicates no data available.

Top-Ranked Schools with Finance Programs in Georgia

Forbes’ Best Business Schools 2019

  • Emory University (#22)
  • Georgia Institute of Technology (#28)
  • University of Georgia (#48)

Georgetown CEW’s ROI Ranking by Long-Term Net Present Value 2019

The Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce (CEW) has compared 4,500 colleges and universities on graduates’ return on investment (ROI). We use their net present value (NPV) ranking, which is the current dollar value of earning a four-year degree from the school over a 40-year horizon.

  • Georgia Institute of Technology (#27; $1,729,000)
  • Emory University (#86; $1,372,000)
  • Augusta University (#91; $1,360,000)
  • University of Georgia (#358; $1,074,000)
  • Mercer University (#592; $991,000)
  • Georgia State University (#960; $908,000)
  • University of North Georgia (#968; $907,000)
  • Georgia Southern University (#1,150; $871,000)
  • Brenau University (#1,161; $869,000)
  • Piedmont College (#1,370; $840,000)7

Princeton Review’s Great Schools for Business and Finance Majors 2020

  • Emory University
  • Mercer University

US News & World Report’s Best Undergraduate Finance Programs 2021

  • Emory University (#23 tie)
  • Georgia Institute of Technology (#35 tie)

Select Schools in Georgia with Finance Degrees

Traditional Undergraduate Programs

Augusta University

Students can earn a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Financial Services at Augusta University. The program, which is administered through the widely-recognized James M. Hull College of Business, prepares students to provide financial advice to individuals, organizations, and government entities. In addition to 18 credit hours in the Financial Services concentration, students complete 36 credit hours of business courses and a further 18 credit hours in accounting and economics courses. Sample courses include Financial Planning; Strategic Management; Investment and Portfolio Analysis; and Principles of Data Management and Analysis. Throughout the course of study students are provided with comprehensive academic and career support designed specifically for business students.

Valdosta State University

The Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Finance at Valdosta State University (VSU) emphasizes financial decision-making and capital management skills. The degree program boasts small average class sizes and a highly educated faculty. Enrichment activities such as study abroad, financial internships, and memberships in organizations including Beta Alpha Psi and the VSU Investment Club are available to Finance majors. Students can expect to take courses like Capital Budgeting and Advanced Financial Management; Investments; and Modern Financial Intermediaries and Risk Management. The Harley Langdale, Jr. College of Business Administration, in which the BBA program is housed, is also home to the Georgia FinTech Academy, an online financial technology (fintech) incubator and specialized education services provider.

Traditional Master’s Programs

Georgia State University

Georgia State University’s (Georgia State) Robinson College of Business offers a Master of Science in Finance (MSF). Classes in the four-semester program are held at the Buckhead Center campus on weeknights twice a week. Students in this program will learn the fundamentals of financial analysis and wealth management. Required courses include Financial Data Analytics, Valuation of Financial Assets, and Financial Leadership. A variety of electives are also offered, such as Hedge Funds and Their Trading Strategies and Global Portfolio Management. As a nationally-recognized public institution, graduates of Georgia State are often recruited by Georgia’s many corporate employers, including Georgia Pacific, Home Depot, Bank of America, Delta Airlines, and Turner Broadcasting.

Emory University

The Goizueta Business School at Emory University, which is regularly ranked in the Best Business School rankings by US News & World Report, offers several Master of Business Administration (MBA) options for graduate students interested in finance. MBA students can choose from a one-year, full-time program; a two-year, full-time program; and a part-time, evening program. Formal concentrations related to finance include Alternative Investments, Capital Markets, Corporate Finance, Global Financial Reporting Analysis, Investment Banking, and Real Estate. Note that the concentrations available vary according to the MBA track selected. The MBA programs have a competitive track record in placing students in full-time employment related to their areas of specialization. Upon enrollment, all students are paired with a career coach, and all classes maintain a five-to-one student-professor ratio.

Georgia Institute of Technology

Georgia Institute of Technology’s (Georgia Tech) Scheller College of Business offers a full-time MBA with a concentration in Finance. Students enrolled in this program will learn skills in financial modeling, mergers and acquisitions, financial consulting, and general management. The 22-month full-time program requires courses such as International Finance, Management of Financial Institutions, and Entrepreneurial Finance and Private Equity. All MBA programs at the Scheller College of Business at Georgia Tech heavily rely on technology, teaching students to use technology to decipher large-scale financial probabilities. The Scheller College of Business is regularly top-ranked by such publications as Bloomberg Businessweek.

Online and Hybrid Programs

Brenau University

Brenau University’s College of Business and Mass Communication offers a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Finance online and at all of its Georgia campuses: Augusta, Gainesville, North Atlanta, and South Atlanta. The MBA in Finance consists of 15 courses in a 45-credit-hour degree program. Students who earn this degree will graduate with the necessary skills to advance to upper management in finance. Concentrations include International Finance, Investments, Corporate Risk Management, Valuation, and Entrepreneurial Finance. Brenau University also offers a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Financial Economics as well as a Finance Certificate for students with graduate degrees.

Kennesaw State University

Kennesaw State University’s Cole College of Business offers an online Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Finance. The WebMBA comprises 10 courses that unfold over five consecutive terms in a lock-step schedule, allowing students to graduate in approximately 20 months. As an online program heavily dependent on virtual education and collaborative projects, the WebMBA covers the same material as its traditional on-campus Kennesaw State counterpart. The collaborative nature of the program promotes networking and peer-to-peer accountability. As a competitive program, applicants are required to have achieved a grade of “C” or better in the following finance undergraduate courses: Statistics and Math Foundations, Accounting Foundation, and Finance Foundation.

University of Georgia

The University of Georgia’s (UGA) College of Family and Consumer Sciences offers an online Master of Science (MS) in Financial Planning. The degree provides a fast-track to a career in financial planning with preparation for the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) exam. Graduates of this online, non-thesis UGA program often find employment at banks, brokerage firms, insurance agencies, or benefits and pension departments within large corporations. Students are required to complete 36 total credit hours to earn the degree, consisting of 12 classes, each with eight-week sessions, over the duration of two years. Courses include Financial Planning and Analysis; Wealth Management; and Estate Planning. Students also complete a Capstone in Financial Planning, which is based on case studies and aligned with CFP Board standards.

Georgia Finance Careers and Salary Outlook

Georgia can be a great location to earn a degree in finance. The state’s capital, Atlanta, is home to a wide number of both financial institutions and corporate headquarters, such as SunTrust Bank, Bank of America, Fidelity Southern Corporation, Global Payments, Equifax, Delta Airlines, Chick-fil-A, CNN, Coca-Cola, Home Depot, and Earthlink. Other companies with large presences in Georgia that regularly hire finance grads include Insight Global, Equifax, Aflac, and LexisNexis Risk Solutions.

Overall, Georgia’s prospects for those in the financial sector are bright. There are 14,150 financial and investment analysts, risk specialists, and specialists and 18,280 financial managers currently employed in Georgia.8,9 Financial managers in Georgia earn an average of $145,750 (compared to $147,530 nationally).9 While some finance professionals in Georgia earn a bit less than the national average (for example, personal financial advisors in Georgia earn an average of $108,650 compared to an average of $119,290 nationally), the finance industry in the state is growing overall.10,11 Financial analyst positions, for example, are projected to grow by 15.9% in Georgia between 2018 and 2028.11 Similarly, financial manager positions are projected to increase by 26.2% during the same time period.11

Georgia Finance Salary Information

OccupationNumber Employed12Average Salary12
Business and Financial Operations Occupations260,840$74,280
Financial and Investment Analysts and Other Specialists14,150$85,630
Financial ExaminersN.Av.$93,020
Financial Managers18,280$145,750
Loan Officers9,460$77,700
Personal Financial Advisors4,950$108,650

Finance Associations in Georgia

References:
1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Forbes Best Business Schools 2019: https://www.forbes.com/business-schools/list/
3. The Princeton Review. The Best 382 Colleges, 2020 Edition. The Princeton Review, 2019.
4. US News & World Report Best Undergraduate Finance Schools 2021: https://www.usnews.com/best-colleges/rankings/business-finance
5. US News & World Report Best Graduate Finance Schools 2021: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools/finance-rankings
6. US News & World Report Best Business Schools 2021: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools
7. Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, Ranking ROI of 4,500 US Colleges and Universities: https://cew.georgetown.edu/cew-reports/CollegeROI/
8. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment and Wages, Financial and Investment Analysts, Financial Risk Specialists, and Financial Specialists, All Other: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes132098.htm
9. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment and Wages, Financial Managers: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes113031.htm
10. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment and Wages, Personal Financial Advisors: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes132052.htm
11. Projections Central Long Term Occupational Projections: https://projectionscentral.org/projections/longterm
12. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics, State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Georgia: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ga.htm