The majority of states across the nation, including Massachusetts, do not require personal finance curriculum in their schools. Beginning with the spring 2020 semester, Curry’s Personal Finance course (MGT 2820) will be added to a range of options satisfying Curry’s Wellness requirement, and the course will meet one of the College’s General Education requirements for graduation. The Management Department is also expanding availability of the course and opening registration for students of all majors for the upcoming spring semester.
“Generally, less than 15 percent of my students report having had any formalized personal finance education,” said Dr. Michael Bennett, Professor of Business Management who has taught one section of the Personal Finance course each semester at Curry since Fall 2000. “At this point in their lives, these students have the gift of time. Beginning saving and learning how to avoid financial pitfalls while they are young can really make a difference down the road.”
Dr. Ishani Tewari, Assistant Professor of Business Management, covers personal finance within her Economics courses and has served as a contributor for online finance sites, such as WalletHub. She sees a similar understanding of personal finance among her students. “The current generation of college students has a different experience with money, as most of their financial transactions are completed digitally through apps like Venmo or debit cards, rather than with physical money. Because many of them are waiting longer to get credit cards, they lack of knowledge about credit and different types of debt.”
The Personal Finance course at Curry takes a holistic view, using an overall framework to help students develop good financial habits, understand the principles of saving and credit, and take ownership of their finances. Students in a wide variety of majors have expressed increasing interest in taking the course, which has been prioritized for Management majors pursuing a Finance concentration.
“We emphasize the importance of planning,” said Dr. Bennett. “We encourage students to envision their ‘future selves,’ while they work to achieve personal financial goals.”