Finance is the art and science of managing money. The main goal of the finance major is to expose students to three primary areas of finance: (1) managerial or corporate finance, (2) investments, and (3) money and capital markets. Knowledge of all three areas and a broad business background are important for success in the finance field. Corporate finance covers the role of the financial manager, especially pertaining to the issues of capital budgeting, capital structure and financing decisions. The investments area deals with the risks and returns associated with individual investments, with stocks, bonds and mutual funds and the basics of portfolio management. Students also gain familiarity with the workings of the stock market and buying and selling stock. A study of money and financial markets provides an understanding of the role of financial markets, institutions, and instruments in the economic environment in which businesses and other agencies operate. Concepts such as the time value of money, understanding and interpreting financial statements and ratios, risk and return, asset valuation and financial planning run throughout the curriculum.
Berry College also provides students with a hands-on experience managing a real investment portfolio that started out with a $100,000 balance. The Berry Investment Group (BIG) is a student organization dedicated to educating students and managing the portfolio. BIG members meet to discuss individual stocks and the stock market and to hear from guest speakers in the investments field. While BIG is open to students across the campus, finance majors are particularly active in the organization.
Requirements: 63 hours