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Press Release

University of Dubuque Partners with Kaplan to Strengthen Students’ Work Readiness and Employability in the Financial Sector

March 16, 2021

Russell Schaffer

New York, March 16, 2021—The University of Dubuque, a private, Christian university with a foundation in the liberal arts, has partnered with the College for Financial Planning®—a Kaplan Company, part of global educational company Kaplan, Inc., to offer students a series of programs in financial education. Designed to enhance the job readiness and marketability of aspiring professionals by pairing traditional degree programs with the College’s educational programs, the courses enable students to earn industry-recognized credentials that are highly valued by employers.

The University of Dubuque has partnered with the College for Financial Planning—a Kaplan Company, part of global educational company Kaplan, Inc., to offer students a series of programs in financial education.

The College for Financial Planning became a part of Kaplan in 2018. The College introduced the Certified Financial Planner™ certification shortly after its founding in 1972, which is now the nation’s most recognized and respected financial planning credential. With more than 77,000 graduates of the College’s program for CFP® certification, University of Dubuque students will benefit from unparalleled experience in financial education.

The courses will be offered through UD’s Master in Management – Holistic Wealth Management (MMWM) program as part of the 30-credit hour degree requirements. Students also have the option of enrolling in the seven-course CFP® certification education program (non-degree seeking).

According to a 2019 Quest Research Group survey, more than 70 percent of respondents agreed that an in-demand industry credential combined with a traditional degree would help college students have a more well-rounded education and overall skill set. UD is one of a growing number of institutions of higher learning that are making a major investment in alternative credentialing programs.

“University of Dubuque’s mission calls us to excellence in academic inquiry and professional preparation. This partnership with Kaplan will help us fulfill that mission. We are pleased to partner with the premier provider of financial planning education in offering our students access to the credentials that will prepare them to serve the world through financial planning,” said Mark Ward, PhD, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the faculty at the University of Dubuque.

“The notion of pairing an undergraduate degree and traditional employment experience with an industry-recognized credential is attractive to students and employers. To be in the workforce with both a strong educational background and specific skills will give professionals an edge in a competitive market. The University of Dubuque is taking a significant leadership role in this movement,” said Eric Kuennen, executive director of work readiness solutions, University Partners, Kaplan. “As a faith-based community, the University of Dubuque is well-known for educating students and pursuing excellence in scholarship through professional academic formation with a strong liberal arts core. Coupled with Kaplan’s programs, students will be even better equipped to close the skills gap and thrive in the world of work.”

The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) says that as of December 31, 2020, the number of CFP® professionals reached a record high of 88,726, a growth of 2.7 percent over 2019 numbers, signaling a need for such professionals during these unpredictable economic times. Other milestones include the number of female CFP® professionals increasing to an all-time high of 20,633, to include 23.3 percent of all CFP® professionals. Additionally, the number of Black and Latino CFP professionals increased in 2020 to 3,688 – a percentage growth of 12.6 percent over 2019.

For more information about the Master in Management – Holistic Wealth Management degree at the University of Dubuque, students can visit For reporters interested in covering this growing trend, please contact Russell Schaffer at or 917.822.8190.

Test names and other trademarks are the property of the respective trademark holders.

About the University of Dubuque

The University of Dubuque is a private university offering undergraduate, graduate, and theological seminary degrees as well as other educational opportunities with the intention of educating and forming the whole person. Founded in 1852, UD is home to around 2,300 students. Visit

About the College for Financial Planning—A Kaplan Company

Founded in 1972, the College for Financial Planning®—a Kaplan Company provides accessible and flexible degree, non-degree, and continuing professional education programs to students nationwide. In July 2018, Kaplan Professional acquired the College, bringing together two respected leaders in financial services education. The College remains a separate institution, owned by Kaplan and accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. For more information, visit


Russell Schaffer
Office: 917.822.8190

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