Students interested in helping individuals and families improve their lives through financial literacy can pursue a new minor being offered starting from fall 2021.
The School of Family and Consumer Sciences has added a minor in Financial Counseling which introduces students to the basic principles in personal and family financial management and can lead to a career in professional financial coaching and counseling.
“Financial planning and counseling is a fast-growing career field,” said Sophie Li, associate professor, Human Development and Family Sciences., “This new minor in Financial Counseling minor introduces NIU students to this growing field.”
Li said the Financial Counseling minor will include core courses – like HDFS 344 Financial Counseling and Consumer Credit – that explore the steps financial counselors take to help clients make sound financial decisions. Courses include the most up-to-date business practices, and students will learn skills like creating and implementing a financial goal and a budget along with managing credit and debt for themselves and clients.
Experiential activities including case studies and simulated client interactions are part of the program requirement. Students will also have opportunities to practice as a financial coach at internship sites on campus.
“This minor gives students the knowledge and skills to assist financially vulnerable individuals and families in achieving their financial goals in many settings,” Li said. “Graduates may find careers in social service agencies, nonprofit organizations, hospitals and medical sites.”
The minor will also satisfy the educational requirements to be eligible to sit for the exam portion of the Accredited Financial Counselor designation conferred by the Association for Financial Counseling & Planning Education (AFCPE).