Faculty: 3 full-time, 2 non-tenure track, 3 extension, 1 tenure track opening, 3 adjunct
Student-to-faculty ratio: 48:1 tenure-track faculty, 33:1 including non- regular faculty
Tuition: For an online course, $485 per graduate credit hour (a certificate requires 18 hours and an M.S. requires 42 hours). For classroom courses, Missouri residents seeking an M.S. pay $269.40 per credit hour with $411.34 in other fees; nonresidents seeking an M.S. pay $470.30 per credit hour with $411.34 in fees; for a resident B.S. (14hours per semester) $9,272; for a nonresident B.S., $22,440.
FPA student chapter: Yes
Profile: The University of Missouri is home to the oldest departmental-level financial planning program in the country, but it took a while to get there. In the 1960s, the program was the Department of Family Economics and Management before becoming the College of Home Economics. In 1987, the name changed to the Department of Consumer and Family Economics and, finally, in 2000, the Personal Financial Planning Department, three years after the program was registered with the CFP Board. "It wasn't that we wanted to be the first one at all, it's just that I got tired of explaining what we do," says the department chairman, Rob Weagley, only half-jokingly. The program offers a certificate track and several degree tracks, including a Ph.D. Larger universities resist elevating financial planning to departmental status, Weagley says, because they focus on "pure" or theoretical finance, which is largely divorced from real-world financial needs. "But at programs like ours," he says, "all we care about is the application. We care about the people."
SAN DIEGO STATE UNIVERSITY
CFP Board-registered programs (online and in person): B.S. in financial services with a certificate in personal financial planning; M.S. in financial and tax planning, executive financial planning advanced certificate
Enrollment: 115 in bachelor's, 16 in master's, 22 in executive
Faculty (full-time and adjunct): 15 for bachelor's and master's programs; 5 for executive
Student-to-faculty ratio: 9:1
Tuition: For a California resident seeking a bachelor's degree, $3,538 per semester; nonresident bachelor's, $9,118 per semester. For a California resident master's, $3,952 to $7,567 per semester (depending on course load); nonresident master's, $6,184 to $12,031 per semester. For an executive certificate, $7,416 for the complete program.
FPA student chapter: Yes
Profile: The oldest, continuously operating financial planning program in the country, San Diego State University's program resides in the finance department of the business school. That placement was a conscious choice by Tom Warschauer, who founded the program in 1980 and still runs it. Programs in some other universities share space in home economics or even communications departments. SDSU's new capstone course - which the CFP Board mandated this year for all its registered programs - covers counseling and communication skills as well as financial planning software. "There are at least a half-dozen areas that are important in our program," Warschauer says. The graduate degrees require rigorous specializations in either wealth management or tax planning, in addition to regular planning courses. The programs were the country's first to be at a school certified by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, and all courses are for credit. The school said that 32 students sat for CFP exams in 2011 and that 67% of the bachelor's students passed, along with 80% of the master's students and 60% of the executive students.
TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY
CFP Board-registered programs (online and in person): 11, ranging from undergraduate to Ph.D., including minors and dual graduate degrees in financial planning and business or law, and one certificate
Enrollment: 100 PFP undergraduate majors, 60 undergraduate minors (studies in personal finance), 90 PFP master's students (including dual-degree law, dual-degree MBA, and dual-degree finance majors), and 33 PFP Ph.D. students
Faculty: 12 full-time, 2 adjunct
Student-to-faculty ratio: 16:3 for the PFP major courses
Tuition: Texas-resident undergraduates (12 hours) $3,760 per semester, out-of-state undergraduates $4,471 per semester, Texas-resident graduate students (12 hours) $4,359 per semester, out-of-state graduate students $8,570 per semester.
FPA student chapter: No
Profile: This September, in a historic move, the well-known financial planning program at Texas Tech was elevated to departmental status - alongside finance, physics and philosophy. Texas Tech is just the second college or university to bestow financial planning with this stature, after the University of Missouri. "We had to grow big enough and have enough faculty and enough students to get to departmental status," says Vickie Hampton, the department's chairwoman. Yet even this granddaddy of academic financial planning programs lacks visibility. A large percentage of the planning graduates from Texas Tech every year discovered the major only after they were already on campus, studying other subjects. But the school is pushing to raise awareness of financial planning as a profession. The CFP Board gave the university a $2 million, seven-year grant in 2002 to help it send its graduates out to populate other academic programs, and this migration continues. Texas Tech said 19 undergraduates and 19 graduate students took the CFP exams in 2011; 26% of the undergraduates and 51% of the grad students passed.