New Business Program Gives Business Graduate a Head Start

Article ID: 588165

Released: 16-Apr-2012 3:00 PM EDT

Source Newsroom: Creighton University

For Immediate Release: April 16, 2012

Newswise — OMAHA, Neb. – Benjamin McAnany is looking forward to graduating from Creighton University in May. And, thanks to a unique partnership between the University’s College of Business Center For Insurance and Risk Management (CFIRM), he hasn’t had to worry about looking for a job. He accepted an offer while he was still in his junior year.

At the beginning of his junior year, McAnany was lined up to be a finance and marketing major, but he was unsure of which finance track he would take. Then he heard Ed Horwitz, director of the Creighton’s CFIRM, speak at a Creighton Finance Management Association meeting.

After speaking more extensively with Horwitz about CFIRM McAnany decided to enroll in the program under the financial planning track. The financial planning track prepares students for the CFP® exam as well as preparing them to clearly demonstrate to potential employers the level of commitment and Because of McAnany’s participation in CFIRM he was offered an excellent job opportunity with Mutual of Omaha well before graduation.

“Through the connections I made at Mutual of Omaha as an intern, my boss, Jon Twidwell, contacted me about being a financial advisor in a new office in Kansas City, Mo., where I am originally from,” said McAnany.

In 2011 CFRIM partnered with The American College and the Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) Board of Standards to implement unique programs for Creighton’s finance students. Through these new programs, students can receive direct credit from The American College toward their CLU® and ChFC® designations. In addition, students and executives can earn a degree or Certificate in Professional Financial Planning that allows them to sit for the CFP® exam. Creighton is one of only seven universities in the country to have a Financial Planning Association student chapter on campus.

“The program offers students a chance to diversify their knowledge across six different sectors of tax accounting, investing, retirement, estate, personal finance and insurance,” said McAnany. “Students graduate with a financial planning certificate, but are exposed to so many different categories of business, which can spark an interest in something greater than just finance.”

In 2011 McAnany also received a scholarship from the Nebraska Chapter of the Financial Planning Association in support of his attainment of the CFP®. “The support from the Financial Planning Association and the business community is what makes the student’s experience at Creighton special,” says Horwitz.

Alumni and employers like Twidwell, a Creighton business and law graduate, know the quality of this program and that it increases new financial advisor’s probably of success by being able to spot potential areas of planning and need faster than most financial advisors who are already learning in the field.

“One of the things that we recognized when evaluating Ben for our Financial Advisor Trainee Program was that, through his schooling at Creighton, he already had a solid understanding of the major financial planning issues affecting individuals and businesses,” said Twidwell. “This understanding will allow Ben to get off to a quicker start building his financial advisory practice.”

Employers within the Omaha community agree that CFIRM students are ahead of the curve.

“We find the students at Creighton to have a clear advantage in that they already understand how our products and industry work,” said Traci Harrison who recruits CFIRM students for Northwestern Mutual in Nebraska. “This helps us focus our efforts on building their careers and translates to a better chance of success overall.”

Employment opportunities for Creighton’s business graduates are many and, according to Jeremy Fisher, associate director of Business Career Programs in Creighton’s Career Center, “The job placement for Creighton’s College of Business graduates in the past five years has averaged 94 - 98 percent within six months of graduation,” said Fischer. “Internship placement has reached 90 percent, meaning business students have completed at least one internship in their four years at Creighton. Both of these placement rates are among the highest in the nation.”

For more information, contact CFIRM Director Edward Horwitz at


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