SHU Announces New Master’s in Finance and Investment Management Degree

News Story: October 1, 2014

Sacred Heart University’s John F. Welch College of Business will be launching a new master’s in finance and investment management degree in the fall of 2015. The program will be one of the flagship offerings based in the campus’ new Frank and Marisa Martire Business & Communications Center, a 125,000-square-foot academic building that is currently under construction. It will house the John F. Welch College of Business and Department of Communication & Media Studies.

“This new master’s degree was developed out of a response to the changing needs for more analytical, quantitative and finance professionals in the marketplace,” says Kwamie Dunbar, assistant professor of finance and the interim director of the new program. “Given our proximity to the financial district in New York City, the hedge fund community within Fairfield County and the prospering business center in Stamford, we find ourselves in a fitting location to offer this type of education. We’ve had a longstanding relationship with the local finance community, and we look forward to working with them even more closely and to contributing more future leaders for their ranks.”

The Welch College of Business’ undergraduate program in investment management is a Chartered Financial Analyst candidate member, and the program has also partnered with the town’s CFA Society.

Dunbar says that most students interested in the new program would likely be—or aspire to be—decision-makers in corporate treasury departments, portfolio managers, investment bankers or risk managers, among others. The degree can also be used as a vehicle toward a doctorate in business administration, he says, or as a more technical degree for the increasing population of business students seeking a non-MBA track toward advanced education.

“The program is applied in nature, and it’s a cut above traditional finance programs in that we stress analytical skill sets, application of theory and practice in the program,” Dunbar says. “Students will be taken in a cohort framework where they are mentored by both practitioners and faculty members. Moreover, the courses will be developed jointly by practitioners and academics, so changes in industry needs can be quickly reflected within the curriculum.”

Courses available in the 33-credit degree will include “Financial Analysis and Firm Valuation,” “Advanced Derivatives and Risk Management,” “Quantitative Finance” and “Portfolio Management.” Students will also be encouraged to complete an internship under the mentorship of a faculty advisor, in what Dunbar terms “a problem-based learning environment.”

The university intends to hire two new full-time faculty to join the college in support of the program and will admit an initial cohort of 20 students as degree candidates. The State of Connecticut approved the new degree in July.

Those interested in the new master’s in finance and investment degree may attend an information session at the main campus on October 14 at 6:30 p.m. For details, contact Pam Pillo at 203-365-4716 or pillop@sacredheart.edu.