The Department of Finance, Insurance, and Law in Illinois State University’s College of Business has recently implemented an Institute for Financial Planning and Analysis. Professor of Finance Edgar Norton has been named the director of the new institute.
The mission of the Institute is to promote and cultivate financial-advising experiences forstudents, and to reach out to business partners working in financial services. “My first task is to continue to develop relationships with employers, alums, and possible scholarship donors,” said Norton. “We want to create an Institute Roundtable of professionals who will be engaged and helpful in building our programs and creating opportunities for students.”
Norton hopes to secure internships, mentorships, and job shadowing opportunities for students. “The big picture is partnering with the finance profession so our students benefit and our program benefits as well,” he said. “These partners can provide good advice as to what is going on in the real-world of finance.”
Department of Finance, Insurance, and Law Chair Gary Koppenhaver worked with Norton to create the Institute, and noted it will not only give students opportunities, but provide businesses the chance to work with faculty. “Businesses can use our faculty as a resource to deal with the training, development, and research issues they face,” said Koppenhaver. “The Institute is committed to building valued partnerships with the broader community served by Illinois State University and the College of Business.”
Another goal for the Institute is to create a website that could be useful for the community. “We want to let people know, both in the community and on campus, about the Institute and our financial planning programs,” said Norton.
Other engagement ideas Norton has for the Institute is to organize special events such as a financial planning day for students, or have notable speakers come to campus and talk about cutting-edge topics in the world of finance. “I’d like to bring in outside people to the campus to learn about our programs and then maybe they would be willing to hire an intern or be available for a day of job shadowing so a student can learn what it’s like to be a corporate treasurer, financial planner, or investment analyst,” said Norton.
The last short-term goal on Norton’s list is to create opportunities for continuing-education credit. “Many finance professions require continuing education,” he said. Norton noted that CFP (Certified Financial Planner) and ChFC (Chartered Financial Consultant) designation requires continuing education to keep the certifications current.
Norton added that overall, he wants to make Illinois State the go-to place both for finance students looking for professional opportunities and for businesses seeking interns and future employees.