The Finance cluster is about planning, services for financial and investment planning, banking, insurance and business financial management. The financial industry offers many dynamic careers, and people who thrive in it are good with numbers. These jobs will require acute attention to detail. College graduates who have sales ability, customer-service skills, and knowledge of a wide range of insurance and financial services products will have the best prospects.
Employment Projections: 2010-2020
Finance is one of the smallest career clusters and is not projected to grow by a substantial amount over the next decade. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates that about 3.8 million workers were employed in the cluster in 2010, and expects to see fewer than 500,000 jobs added through 2020. The expected growth rate of about 11 percent is about average compared to other clusters.
The report Employment Projections for the Finance Career Cluster 2010-2020 includes data on occupations growing faster that the nation average, pathways employment overview, occupations with the most job openings, and employment projections.
What They Make...
Occupations in this cluster and what they make in Virginia
|Occupation||Employed in VA||Typical salary1||Typical entry-level Education|
|Accountants and auditors||37,520||$40K–$112K||Bachelor's degree|
|Budget analysts||3,020||$46K–$104K||Bachelor's degree|
|Credit analysts||1,630||$37K–$116k||Bachelor's degree|
|Credit authorizers and clerks||960||$24K–$52K||High school diploma|
|Financial analysts||9,060||$47K–$148K||Bachelor's degree|
|Financial managers||13,570||$60K–$187K+||Bachelor's degree|
|Financial services sales agents||5,060||$32K–$187K+||Bachelor's degree|
|Insurance appraisers (auto)||210||$42K–$83K||Postsecondary
|Insurance sales agents||8,060||$26K–$117K||High school diploma|
|Insurance underwriters||1,770||$39K–$110K||Bachelor's degree|
|Loan interviewers and clerks||5,090||$23K–$51K||High school diploma|
|Loan officers||6,890||$33K–$120K||High school diploma|
|Personal financial advisers||3,750||$32K-$187K+||Bachelor's degree|
|Real estate appraisers||1,220||$26K–$92K||High school diploma|
|Tax preparers||1,870||$19K–$77K||High school diploma|
|Tellers||12,840||$20K–$34K||High school diploma|
|Title examiners||1,080||$26K–$75K||High school diploma|
110th to 90th percentile
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Career Cluster Planning
A resource for counselors, administrators, and educators
CTE Administrative Planning Guide (APG) – includes information to help local school divisions plan and schedule instructional programs. The APG is organized by career clusters, with a complete listing of courses, concentration sequences, and credentials available to students as they plan for career entry and continuing education. Users may access course information by cluster or by searching for specific courses or certifications.
Career Planning Guide – includes an easy way for students and counselors to look for courses to further career goals. One can search for occupations, browse by Career Clusters or favorite academic subjects.
Information and tips for instructional leaders, administrators, counselors and teachers/faculty for creating a career pathway academic and career plan of study.
Sample Academic and Career Plans of Study
School divisions are asked to develop sample plans of study based on the courses offered within their schools, the employment needs of the region, and the post-high school educational opportunities needed for these careers. Once these sample plans are developed, they can be customized to the needs of individual students so that all students have the opportunity to have an individualized academic and career plan of study.
Sample Pathway Plans of Study for Finance:
- Accounting (Word)
- Banking Services (Word)
- Business Finance (Word)
- Insurance (Word)
- Securities & Investments (Word)
- Blank Plan of Study (with fields) (Word)
Also see Sample Plans of Study for all clusters and pathways.
The Career Clusters logo and its extensions are the property of the National Career Technical Foundation, as managed by NASDCTEc. Some content on this page is from the publication, R U College & Career Ready? - 2014 Edition; and is used here with permission from the Virginia Business Publications LLC and Trailblazers in the Demographics and Workforce Section of the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service at the University of Virginia.