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Finance Schools in Washington

This guide aims to inform students about graduate degrees in finance in the state of Washington. These master’s in finance programs provide in-depth business and financial knowledge to students ranging from new graduates looking to enter the field to those with years of business experience hoping to advance their careers. Degrees can be completed in as few as 10 months. Finance degree programs in Washington are highly flexible, allowing students to work on degrees either full-time, part-time, online, or through a hybrid program. Most graduate finance schools in Washington are located in Tacoma and Seattle, two of the largest cities in the state, allowing students to network in the financial centers of Washington.

Finance Program Stats

  • There are 11 four-year not-for-profit colleges and universities with finance degree programs in Washington.1
  • 5 schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in finance.1

Institution-Wide Facts

  • Highest graduation rate*: University of Washington-Seattle Campus 84%.1
  • Highest transfer-out rate*: Whitworth University 23%.1
  • Highest net price per year*: Seattle University $35,627.1
  • Lowest net price per year*: University of Washington-Tacoma Campus $8,539.1
  • Annual undergraduate tuition range for finance programs in Washington*: $6,951-$41,265.1
  • 2 schools in the Businessweek’s Top Business Undergraduate Programs in 2016: University of Washington Foster School of Business (#52), Seattle University Albers School of Business and Economics (#86).2
  • 1 school in the US News Best Business Graduate Schools in 2017 (top 100): University of Washington Foster School of Business (#27)3

*For not-for-profit 4-year colleges and universities that offer a finance degree program.

Schools in Washington with Master’s in Finance Degrees

Traditional Master’s in Finance Programs

Seattle University

Seattle University Albers School of Business and Economics offers a Master of Science in Finance (MSF) that can be taken either part-time or full-time. Full-time students can expect to complete the program in one year and part-time students can graduate in two years. Seattle University’s MSF is a STEM-designated degree program and is approved for the CFA Institute University Affiliation Program. This finance master’s is designed for students with an undergraduate degree in business. Applicants without a business background may have to take prerequisite business courses. Seattle University also allows students to pursue an MSF concurrently with a second graduate degree. Dual program opportunities include the Professional MBA, Master of Professional Accounting, Master of Science in Business Analytics, and the Juris Doctorate. Students may choose from three different tracks: Financial Analyst/Investments, Risk Management, and Corporate Finance. Course titles offered include Financial Markets and Institutions, Financial Risk Management, Corporate Investment Decisions, and Finance for International Business. New students are admitted each term, and GMAT or GRE scores are required.

Pacific Lutheran University

Pacific Lutheran University offers a STEM-designated master’s in finance degree that caters to both new graduates and those with business experience. Pacific Lutheran’s MSF degree is recognized by the CFA Institute University and prepares students for the Level I and Level II Certified Financial Analyst (CFA) exams. Full-time students can complete the degree in as little as 10 months and a part-time option is also available. A limited number of scholarships and fellowships are available for MSF students. Course titles include Financial Econometrics, Foundations of Finance, Advanced Corporate Finance, and Risk Management. The final course students take is entitled Capstone: Integration and Graduate Research in Finance, which requires students to complete a research project before graduation. Students must submit GMAT or GRE scores to be accepted. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis but it is recommended that applications be submitted by March 1st to be considered for scholarships.

Seattle Pacific University

Seattle Pacific University’s School of Business, Government, and Economics offers a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a finance emphasis option. This 45-credit program features 30 credits of advanced coursework and 15 credits of electives in a chosen area of emphasis. 27 pre-MBA credits are also required prior to enrolling. Advanced and elective course titles include Financial Analysis, Global Political Economics, Advanced Problems in Finance, and Futures, Options, and Risk Management. Students may choose to complete this degree part-time and classes are offered in the evening. GMAT scores are required for admission, as well as proof of one year of continuous full-time employment after earning a bachelor’s degree. Applications are accepted in August, November, February, and May.

Online Master’s in Finance Programs

City University of Seattle

City University of Seattle’s Master of Business Administration (MBA) is a flexible program that offers an emphasis in finance. Students have the option to complete this program either fully online, on-campus, or as a hybrid program. This 48-51 credit program is designed to give students foundation courses in business as well as a chosen field of specialization to prepare students for a variety of business and financial careers. Finance elective course titles include Equity Market and Debt Instrument Management, Banking and the Movement of Capital, and Financial Management of Public and Not-For-Profit Organizations. Students must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university, but GMAT or GRE scores are not required. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The City University of Seattle offers professional development events and online networking for students and alumni, as well as a variety of webinars to help students succeed professionally.

University of Washington

The University of Washington’s Foster School of Business offers a hybrid Master of Business Administration (MBA) that features online coursework with quarterly on-campus sessions. This 64-credit program can be completed in two years and applications are accepted in February and June. The hybrid MBA is advertised as 95% online, utilizing online coursework to apply what you learn to your day-to-day career, and 5% on-campus, to network with peers and faculty and participate in team projects. Course titles include Financial Reporting and Analysis, Microeconomics for Managers, Corporate Finance, and Competitive Strategy. The online coursework features both recorded lectures and discussion boards, as well as weekly live sessions with faculty and classmates. The quarterly on-campus sessions are three-to-five day intensives that utilize classroom discussions, career networking and planning, and special lectures. The University of Washington also offers an optional two-credit international course for second-year students.

Washington Career Opportunities for Graduates

Washington state has a variety of large financial institutions across multiple cities, giving new graduates multiple options on where to pursue their professional goals. The state’s largest bank, Washington Federal, is located in Seattle, while other major banks are located in Tacoma, Walla Walla, and Spokane. Washington also has a number of investment banks spread throughout the region, including Meridian Capital LLC in Seattle, Rockwood Capital Partners in Spokane, and Sherry Capital Advisors in Bainbridge Island. Many large corporations also call Seattle home, most notably Amazon and Starbucks. Microsoft Corporation is headquartered in Redmond, Washington. The state of Washington has a diverse population of banks, financial institutions, and corporations spread throughout the state, making it a great location for new graduates.

Washington Finance Job Information

OccupationNumber EmployedAverage Salary
Business and Financial Operations Occupations32,530$76,850
Financial Analysts5,740$81,340
Financial Examiners410$95,370
Financial Managers12,680$127,290
Financial Specialists, All Other3,430$75,260
Loan Officers6,710$74,510
Personal Financial Advisors3,890$112,860

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of 2017.5

Washington Salary and Job Outlook

Washington state shows a steady job growth within the financial sector, making it a good location for recent graduates. Salaries in Washington are lower than the national average, but jobs are expected to grow significantly faster than the national rate. Most notably, the job growth expected for financial managers is over double the national rate, projected at 15.8% over the 10-year period between 2014 and 2024.4 The average salary for a financial manager in Washington is $127,290, with the national average being slightly higher at $139,720.5,6 Financial analyst positions in Washington are also expected to grow faster than the national rate, with projections of 15.6% growth, compared to the national projected rate of 11.7%.4 The average salary of financial analysts, however, is slightly lower, at$81,370 in Washington compared to $97,640 nationally.7,6

Additional Resources

Directory of Washington Master’s in Finance Programs

City University of Seattle
521 Wall St
Seattle, WA 98121
(206) 239-4500
https://www.cityu.edu/

Pacific Lutheran University
12180 Park Ave S
Tacoma, WA 98447
(253) 535-7411
https://www.plu.edu/

Seattle University
901 12th Ave
Seattle, WA 98122
(206) 296-6000
https://www.seattleu.edu/

University of Washington
1410 NE Campus Pkwy
Seattle, WA 98195-5852
(206) 543-9686
http://www.washington.edu/

University of Washington Bothell
18115 Campus Way NE
Bothell, WA 98011
(425) 352-5000
https://www.uwb.edu/

References:
1. National Center for Education Statistics (NCES): https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Bloomberg, Best Undergraduate Business Schools 2016: https://www.bloomberg.com/features/2016-best-undergrad-business-schools/
3. US News & World Report, Best Business Schools in 2017: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools/mba-rankings
4. Projections Central, Long Term Occupational Projections: http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm
5. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2016 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Washington: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_wa.htm
6. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2016 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Financial Manager: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes113031.htm
7. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2016 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Financial Analyst: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes132051.htm