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Financial planning students continue to fly high throughout September

10/06/2016

Two student teams from the Certified Financial Planning Program at The University of Akron achieved top finishes at two national competitions in September. One of UA’s teams earned first place at the National Association of Government Defined Contribution Administrators (NAGDCA) Retirement Quiz Bowl in Denver, Colo. Another UA student team came in second place at the national Financial Planning Association’s annual conference in Baltimore, Md.

“We are very excited that our teams continue to thrive at national competitions,” said Suzanne GradisherJ.D., an associate professor of finance and the faculty advisor for the Financial Planning Association at UA. 

The students who competed at the Financial Planning Association’s annual conference are Benjamin Schwarz of Stow, Adrianna Demjanjuk of Broadview Heights, and Joseph Johnson of Petersburg, Ohio. The UA team that competed in the NAGDCA Retirement Quiz Bowl consisted of the same three members, with the addition of Cinara Foor of Massillon.

At the NAGDCA Retirement Knowledge Quiz Bowl, the UA team took home $1,600 in cash and a trophy for its first-place finish. The quiz bowl was a game-show style challenge and engaged students in general retirement planning issues and expanded awareness of the financial planning profession. Other schools in the competition included the University of Missouri and Texas A&M.

“Our Financial Planning program at the University of Akron is showcasing its potential and is showing our competition what Akron has to offer,” said Dr. Barry Mulholland, a visiting professor of practice and director of Certified Financial Planning programs.

The UA team’s second-place standing at the Financial Planning Challenge in Baltimore earned a $5,000 scholarship for the College of Business Administration. The University of Akron is the only school in the nation to finish in the top two rankings for three consecutive years at the national Financial Planning Association’s annual conference.

At the conference, the team members tackled three phases of challenges including a written financial planning case study, a financial planning case study presentation, and the “How Do You Know?” Challenge, a game-show style financial planning knowledge contest.

The University of Akron faced many renowned schools during the contest, including The Ohio State University, Kansas State University, Texas Tech and the University of Georgia.

 Story by Courtney Bosetti


NAGDCA 2016 Team

Competing in the NAGDCA Retirement Quiz Bowl were, from left, Adriana Demjanjuk, Cinara Foor, Benjamin Schwarz and Joseph Johnson.


FPA Challenge Team

From left are Dr. Barry Mulholland, Benjamin Schwarz, Adriana Demjanjuk, Joseph Johnson and Suzanne Gradisher, J.D. Mulholland, a visiting professor of practice and director of Certified Financial Planning (CFP) programs, and Gradisher, an associate professor of finance, are the team’s advisors. The team competed at the Financial Planning Association’s annual conference.