New! Program Pathways Chart
Click here to view all available CPFP program pathways in an easy-to-understand format.
Note from the Program Director
As the spring months turn into a rather warm summer, SMU CPFP students continue to blossom and grow in their understanding of financial planning.
With the addition of an intensive CPFP program at SMU-in-Plano, students now have the choice of three paths to obtain a Certificate in Financial Planning from SMU and qualify to take the CFP Certification Examination. The main campus offers the “traditional path” where students take our seven-course program in successive quarters. Also on the main campus, “pacesetter path” offers two courses over three semesters, hosting Tax as a single semester course offering, allowing students to finish the program in just under a year. The new, intensive program at SMU-in-Plano holds class on Tuesday night and every other Saturday, allowing students to obtain their certificate in less than nine months; it's now the fastest path in the DFW Metroplex to obtain a Certificate in Financial Planning and sit for the certification exam.
I recently attended a Financial Planning Association meeting and was overwhelmed by the number of SMU students who I saw in attendance. Many were graduates and CFP certificants, but I also was greeted by a great number of current students who have joined the FPA. Our program and the FPA work closely together to help our students learn more about the profession. We encourage our students to participate in the FPA pro bono efforts in the community to gain practical financial planning experience. Participation also offers our students the opportunity to meet CFP certificants and become acquainted with the many different practice models. The FPA also offers mentoring programs and job fairs.At this writing, our graduates are receiving the results of the March CFP Exam. I am confident the tradition of our graduates greatly exceeding the national pass rate will continue. When I began teaching in the SMU program five years ago, the “family” was growing rapidly. With this round of test takers, our family is becoming a community as we exceed 100 graduates who have become CFP certficants. Cheers to our growth!
—Tom Ricks, CFP®
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Pacesetter Path: Less Time, Less Tuition
*The final course in the SMU Program, Financial Planning Strategies & Case Studies (Capstone), also requires two books, but both are from Kaplan Financial.
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