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Finance Programs and Careers in Kentucky

This page provides information for students interested in earning finance degrees in Kentucky. Some programs are designed for those with a business background while others are ideal for recent high school graduates or individuals changing careers. Those with a finance degree can find many opportunities in the finance field in Kentucky after graduation, particularly in metropolitan areas such as Louisville and Lexington. Read on below to find details about different degree programs and possible employment opportunities in Kentucky.

Quick Facts

  • There are 13 colleges and universities with finance degree programs in Kentucky.1
  • 2 schools offer a certificate in finance.1
  • No schools offer an associate’s degree in finance.1
  • 13 schools offer a bachelor’s degree in finance.1
  • 3 schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in finance.1
  • No schools ranked in Forbes’ Best Business Schools 2019.2
  • 1 school ranked in Princeton Review’s Great Schools for Business and Finance Majors 2020.3
  • No schools ranked in US News & World Report’s Best Undergraduate Finance Programs 2021.4
  • No schools ranked in US News & World Report’s Best Graduate Finance Programs 2021.5

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 Kentucky
Select Schools in Kentucky with Finance Degrees
Kentucky Finance Careers and Salary Outlook
Finance Associations in Kentucky

Kentucky Finance Program Comparison

We have developed the following table to help you compare all of the finance programs in Kentucky 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.

SchoolAccreditationFinance Degree(s)Acceptance Rate6Grad Rate1Online Options?Median Debt7Net Price1
Asbury UniversityBA-FinanceN.Av.68%$19,500$22,848
Bellarmine UniversityAACSBBA-Finance100%66%$18,750$23,158
Berea CollegeBSBA: FinanceN.Av.68%$4,557$5,156
Eastern Kentucky UniversityBBA-Finance;
BBA-Financial Planning;
BBA-Managerial Finance;
Certificate: Financial Literacy;
Minor-Banking and Financial Services;
Minor-Personal Finance
N.Av.45%Yes$14,000$14,674
Georgetown CollegeBS-FinanceN.Av.45%$18,500$17,609
Morehead State UniversityAACSBBBA-Finance87.8%46%$15,214$12,560
Murray State UniversityAACSBBAB-Finance;
BAB-Financial Planning;
BSB-Finance;
BSB-Financial Planning;
MBA-Finance
Minor-Finance
N.Av.55%Yes$15,000$11,512
Northern Kentucky UniversityBSBA-Finance;
MBA-Finance;
Minor-Finance
N.Av.46%$14,500$9,412
Spalding UniversityIACBEBSBA-Financial PlanningN.Av.40%Yes$16,334$22,314
Thomas More UniversityACBSPBA-FinanceN.Av.54%$15,077$19,766
University of KentuckyAACSBBSBA-Finance;
Certificate: Financial Planning
MSF
79.8%66%Yes$15,000$18,958
University of LouisvilleAACSBBSBA-Finance;
Minor-Finance
58.1%59%$12,500$17,490
Western Kentucky UniversityAACSBBS-Business Finance;
BS-Personal Financial Planning;
Certificate: Financial Planning;
Minor-Finance
45.3%48%$14,250$12,174

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

Top-Ranked Schools with Finance Programs in Kentucky

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.

  • Thomas More College (#446; $1,038,000)
  • University of Kentucky (#808; $939,000)
  • Bellarmine University (#845; $932,000)
  • Spalding University (#883; $923,000)
  • University of Louisville (#1,150; $871,000)
  • Georgetown College (#1,176; $867,000)
  • Northern Kentucky University (#1,576; $812,000)
  • Murray State University (#1,740; $787,000)
  • Eastern Kentucky University (#1,935; $762,000)
  • Berea College (#2,011; $751,000)7

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

  • Berea College

Select Schools in Kentucky with Finance Degrees

Traditional Undergraduate Programs

Asbury University

The Dayton School of Business at Asbury University offers a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Finance. The coursework is quantitative and qualitative and encourages the ability to think logically, analyze accurately, and apply creativity to financial problems. After completing business core courses, students are able to choose specific finance courses to specialize their degrees. Specialization areas of study include Accounting; International Financial Markets and Monetary Economics; Investment and Investment Banking; Corporate Finance; Strategic Financial Modeling; International Business Ventures; Operations Management; and Private Equity, Real Estate, and Venture Capital in Global Markets. There is a 124-credit hour minimum requirement for the degree. The Dayton School of Business Finance major is targeted to prepare students to enter the corporate and investment banking sectors. Internship opportunities are offered in the fall, spring, and summer. Stock and financial simulators are available for students to gain experience using real-world data.

Bellarmine University

The Bellarmine University (Bellarmine) W. Fielding Rubel School of Business offers a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Finance that is AACSB-accredited and is recognized as a CFA Institute University Affiliated Program. To graduate from the Rubel School, students must maintain a 2.00 GPA from all business core courses: Accounting, Business, Economics, and Finance. In addition to business and finance core courses, students will gain a liberal arts education that includes philosophy, English, history, mathematics, and political science. Students can participate in multiple on-campus experiences like the Economics and Finance Club, Investment Club, and the business-based fraternity, Delta Sigma Pi. Graduates have obtained jobs with Atria, Deloitte & Touche, General Electric, Schneider Electric, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. Bellarmine guarantees internship placement for all students. Rubel School students have access to internships with local firms such as General Electric, Steele Technologies, Morgan Stanley, National City Bank, William Mercer, and Constellation Energy.

Morehead State University

Morehead State University’s (MSU) School of Business Administration offers a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Finance. The School of Business Administration is committed to keeping class sizes small, with an average of 19 students per class, allowing students to have personal, one-on-one attention from faculty members. The program is AACSB-accredited and consists of 120 credit hours, composed of general education courses, business qualifying courses, finance track requirements, upper-division courses, and electives. Required finance courses include Investments, Financial Markets and Institutions, Advanced Business Finance, International Finance, and Seminar in Financial Theory and Practice. Graduates will be prepared to enter fields in financial management, investment management, financial institution administration, and financial planning. Students can work with MSU’s Career Services for career planning, interview preparation, and internship placement post-graduation.

University of Louisville

The College of Business at the University of Louisville offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) in Finance. Graduates are prepared to apply critical thinking skills to ethically and creatively solve financial problems on a global-market scale. The focus of the finance curriculum is risk analysis and risk management, preparing students to understand markets and how to manage businesses and firms efficiently. The degree requires a minimum of 120 credit hours, with 31 credit hours in general education requirements, 53 credit hours in business school requirements, 24 credit hours in major requirements, and 18 hours in elective courses. Finance major courses include Intermediate Accounting; Intermediate Corporate Finance; International Finance; Investments; Financial Derivatives; Financial Markets and Institutions; and a capstone. Finance graduates can find careers as financial planners, analysts, actuaries, loan officers, and financial bankers.

Traditional Master’s Programs

Murray State University

At Murray State University’s Arthur J. Bauernfeind College of Business, students can earn a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Finance. The MBA is AACSB-accredited, requires 30 credit hours, and can be completed within 12 to 18 months. With multiple start dates and courses offered entirely online, students are able to continue in the workforce or have internships as they earn the degree. The curriculum focuses on managing a real portfolio while strengthening essential skills such as accounting, business analytics, managerial economics, corporate finance, and marketing. There are two capstone courses in the degree. This program prepares graduates for possible careers such as cash manager, consultant, investment banking associate, credit manager, financial analyst, corporate controller, finance officer or treasurer, and investing sales trader or associate. Students can also choose to pursue this MBA online.

University of Kentucky

At the Gatton College of Business and Economics at the University of Kentucky, students can earn a Master of Science in Finance (MSF). This degree program prepares students for careers in the finance and banking industries through the study of technical, analytical, and interpersonal skills. Full-time students can complete the program in nine months, and part-time students can take two to three years. The curriculum emphasizes foundational subjects such as corporate finance, international financial management, and investments. In addition, students can participate in the $5 million, student-managed investment fund or use university resources to prepare for the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exam. Alumni have gone on to work in fields such as investment banking and asset management and in positions involving the management of mutual funds and hedge funds, as well as in corporate treasury departments.

Online and Hybrid Programs

Eastern Kentucky University

The Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) College of Business and Technology offers a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Finance completely online. Online classes are offered in accelerated eight-week terms with six start dates per year. The degree plan is 120 credit hours in length; transfer students may transfer up to 90 credit hours (though 50% of business course credits must come from EKU). The AACSB-accredited online program follows the same academic curriculum as the on-campus cohort including opportunities for professional preparation. Students will study in courses such as Corporate Finance; Entrepreneurial Finance; Forensic Accounting; and Investment and Portfolio Theory. This program prepares graduates with a comprehensive understanding of both managerial and financial planning, leading to potential careers in financial analysis, tax management, financial examining, and financial planning.

Spalding University

Through Spalding University’s School of Business students can earn a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) with a concentration in Financial Planning in a flexible format–online, on-campus, or during the evenings. The program follows six-week block semesters, creating a schedule that particularly benefits those who are part-time or full-time employed and students who take on internships. The Financial Planning concentration is ideal for individuals who are interested in financial advising services and prepares graduates for careers such as financial counselor, financial planner, risk analyzer, and estate planner. Students will work with applied problem-solving techniques on case studies that emphasize people, planet, and profit. In addition to the foundational course requirements of the BSBA, students will take classes including Tax I; Foundations of Personal Finance; Risk Management and Estate Planning; Investments and Retirement Planning; and Financial Plan Development.

University of Kentucky

The University of Kentucky Gatton College of Business and Economics offers an online certificate in Financial Planning. Students can earn the certificate in less than a year (typically within 11 months) through this online program. Applicants are required to have at least 60 undergraduate credit hours. While the Financial Planning certificate cannot apply towards college degree credit, it does qualify certificate-holders with an undergraduate degree to sit for the CFP exam. This 18-credit course includes Principles for the Financial Planner; Estate Planning; Risk, Insurance, and Retirement Planning; Tax Planning for the Professional; Investment Planning; and Capstone-Financial Plan Development. The curriculum prepares individuals to work in various capacities in financial planning, ranging from large companies to small firms and independent clients. Graduates will be equipped to guide clients through their financial goals and needs.

Kentucky Finance Careers and Salary Outlook

Graduates with degrees in finance in Kentucky can find various career opportunities in the state. Kentucky’s economy is largely based on agriculture, automobile manufacturing, energy production, and medical facilities. Companies such as Hilliard Lyons, GE Appliances, and Republic Bank & Trust Company are headquartered in the state, mostly in and around the urban areas of Louisville and Lexington. Healthcare organizations such as Humana, Norton Healthcare, and Kindred Healthcare also have headquarters in Kentucky. The state is also home to a number of local banking and financial institutions, such as Forcht Group of Kentucky and Paducah Bank.

Although many of the average salaries in Kentucky’s finance industry are lower than national averages, the cost of living in Kentucky is also relatively low.8 Financial analysts in Kentucky earn an average of $67,850 annually.8 Financial analyst positions in Kentucky are projected to grow 10% through 2028, above the national projected rate of 6.2%.9 Financial managers in the state earn an average of $113,070 annually and this field is growing, with a projected growth rate of 18% in the state through 2028, just above the national average projection of 16%.8,9 Personal financial advisors in Kentucky earn an average of $98,300 annually and employment in this field is projected to grow 9.8% through 2028, compared to the national average of 7%.8,9

Kentucky Finance Job Information

OccupationNumber Employed8Average Salary8
Business and Financial Operations Occupations80,210$64,900
Financial and Investment Analysts and Other Specialists3,290$67,850
Financial Examiners500$67,040
Financial Managers6,120$113,070
Loan Officers5,640$67,000
Personal Financial Advisors1,800$98,300

Finance Associations in Kentucky

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 Statistics, State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Kentucky: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ky.htm#13-0000
9. Projections Central Long Term Occupational Projections: https://projectionscentral.org/projections/longterm