The American College of Financial Services has introduced a new designation, aimed at existing advisors who want a deeper knowledge of wealth management techniques and goal-based planning.
“We designed the curriculum to build knowledge in concepts that go beyond a traditional investment education by focusing on how investments can be used to meet the goals of individual investors,” said Michael Finke, dean and chief academic officer at The American College.
The Wealth Management Certified Professional designation will be taught through a combination of digital coursework, including video with faculty, animation and expert interviews, as well as five simulations. The simulations allow students to practice the concepts they’re learning in the curriculum, covering such topics as life-cycle planning, asset allocation, asset location and research-based investment analysis.
The program was designed by Finke; Wade Pfau, professor of retirement income at the school; and David Blanchett, adjunct professor and head of retirement research at Morningstar Investment Management, among others.
The curriculum starts with the basics of financial economics, then goes into applied techniques, such as tax-efficiency, financial instruments, the wealth management needs of business owners and executives, estate and charitable planning, and behavioral finance.
Advisors are given a 12-month window to complete the coursework, which is expected to take approximately six months, and prepare for the final exam. Students are also required to have three years of full-time business experience within five years preceding the date of the award. An undergraduate or graduate degree from an accredited school qualifies as one year of business experience.
The program costs $2,900 spread out over six monthly payments.