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The Department of Finance, Law, Accounting and Real Estate is the home of the academic fields of Finance, Paralegal Studies, Accounting and Real Estate. Our degrees will prepare you for careers in a wide variety of business fields, including banking, investments, corporate finance, personal finance, real estate brokerage, appraisal, development, finance, investment analysis, and property management. Our accounting program includes a general accounting concentration or specialized programs for students interested in pursuing the CPA or Internal Audit. We also offer an M.S. in Accounting at the graduate level. If being part of a legal team is in your future, then paralegal is for you. The programs offered are specifically tailored to enable you to fulfill your professional dream.


The following programs of study are available:

B.S.B.A. in Finance with track options in Corporate Finance and Personal Financial Planning (resident and online)
Minor in Finance
B.S.B.A. in Paralegal Studies - Program Requirement Sheet
B.S. in Integrative Studies: Paralegal
Advanced Paralegal Certificate
B.S.B.A. in Accounting (Clarion, BC3, and online)
B.S.B.A. in Accounting: CPA concentration (Clarion, BC3, and online) - Application Form
B.S.B.A. in Accounting: Industry Concentration
B.S.B.A. in Accounting: Internal Audit and Forensic Accounting Concentration
M.S. in Accounting (online)
Minor in Accounting (Clarion, BC3, and online)
Minor in Real Estate


The Finance program is designed to provide students with the business and analytical tools necessary for successful careers in Finance.

The Corporate Finance track prepares students for a variety of finance positions in banking, investment and industry. The Personal Financial Planning track is registered with the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. and meets the educational requirement for the CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation. The PFP track is desirable for students planning a career as a financial planner as well as careers in banking, financial investments, and insurance.
Career Placement

Clarion's finance majors are enjoying a surge in recognition and career placement. Recent employers of our graduates include the following:

  • BNY Mellon
  • PNC Bank
  • Kennametal
  • Westinghouse
  • Prudential
  • Municap, Inc.
  • Janney Montgomery Scott
  • Key Bank
  • Bechtel
  • Allegheny Ludlum
  • Ameriprise Financial
  • Hefren Tillotson
  • Stifel Financial
  • Northwest Savings Bank
  • Bettis Atomic Power Lab
  • American Eagle


Internships provide students with the opportunity to apply their studies in the business world. Recent internships include the following:

  • Repsol Energy
  • Northwest Savings Bank
  • World Trade Center Group, Dublin, Ireland
  • Bechtel
  • BSI Financial Services
  • Ally Financial
  • Centauri Advisory Group
  • Ameriprise Financial
  • WESCO International
  • PNC Bank
  • Hefren Tillotson
  • IA Construction
  • American Eagle
  • KeyBank

Student Organizations

Student Chapter of the Financial Planning Association (FPA) —The Financial Planning Association® is a student organization created as the definitive resource for students to gain knowledge and establish relationships regarding careers as CFP® Professionals.

The Financial Management Association arranges professional speakers and student competitions. It also organizes trips to sites such as the New York Stock Exchange and New York City investment firms; Washington, D.C. for visits to the U.S. Treasury and Federal Reserve; the national FMA Student Leaders Conference; the RISE conference (student led portfolios) and other interesting destinations.


The Henry G. Burns Scholarship Fund was established to recruit outstanding incoming freshmen. The scholarship is renewable for all four years of undergraduate studies. An annual scholarship also is available.

The department sponsors a four-year renewable scholarship to attract outstanding incoming freshmen, who express a desire to study finance, real estate, or paralegal studies.

The Paul Gray Scholarship is available for sophomore, junior and senior real estate majors.

The Friends of the Department of Finance Scholarship is available for finance and real estate students.
Other scholarships are available in the department in the department and College of Business Administration for upperclassmen.


Approved by the American Bar Association, this program holds the highest approval possible for a paralegal course of study. PennWest Clarion is the only university in the State System of Higher Education to achieve ABA approval. It is one of only two institutions of higher learning in western Pennsylvania to achieve this distinction. It is one of only 260 approved programs in the United States.

PennWest Clarion's Paralegal Program has also been accepted for membership in the American Association of Paralegal Educators.

This fully approved program is available both online and in a traditional classroom environment.
According the United States Department of Labor, paralegal employment opportunities will grow at a much faster than average rate through 2029. The mean wage in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area is $61,200 with higher wages in business legal departments.

Program preparation

Specialized Legal Classes

  • Litigation
  • Family Law
  • Wills and Estates
  • Real Estate Law
  • Computerized Legal Research
  • Administrative Law

Other Law Subjects

  • Torts
  • Constitution
  • Contracts
  • Environmental law
  • Corporations
  • Partnerships
  • Legal ethics
  • Business entities

All paralegal courses count toward the completion of any other major in the College of Business Administration. The B.S. in Paralegal Integrative Studies is a parallel program for non-business students.

The paralegal studies programs are designed to provide for the education of paralegals. A legal assistant or paralegal is a person qualified by education, training, or work experience, who is employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, corporation, governmental agency, or other entity and who performs specifically delegated substantive legal work for which a lawyer is responsible. A paralegal may not practice law.


An internship program in the department provides students with the opportunity to obtain practical experience and interact in the legal community.

Student Organizations

Paralegal Club: Conducts trips to observe local legal proceedings. Previous Paralegal Club trips include a trip to Washington, DC, to the Supreme Court.

A variety of other students organizations are available.


Scholarships are available including a paralegal specific scholarship that is awarded yearly.

Legal reaccreditation

The PennWest Clarion Center for Legal Education is pleased to receive continuation as an Accredited Provider of Continuing Legal Education in Pennsylvania. Clarion's Center for Legal Education has been providing quality, affordable continuing legal education to local attorneys for 27 years. More than 2,300 attorneys and judges have attended conferences during that time period with an average of 85 attendees per year. The primary counties served have been Clarion, Jefferson, Venango, Butler, and Mercer.


Accounting is an exciting and challenging profession that continues to be transformed by current events, globalization, and information technology. Such forces are changing the nature of accounting work and adding to the already large number of job opportunities. Ongoing changes to the regulatory environment, including tax laws, also create wide-ranging opportunities for accountants in a variety of locations across the world.

There are many different types of accountants including:

  • Public
  • Corporate
  • Non-profit
  • Forensic
  • Government


A successful internship program provides a variety of internship positions. The department continuously achieves a high professional placement rate for graduates as well. Recent accounting graduates have gone to work for a range of organizations.

M.S. in Accounting

The M.S. in Accounting (MAcc) degree prepares students for careers in corporate and public accounting as well as satisfying the education requirement to sit for the CPA exam in almost any state.

Employment opportunities include the "big four" and other CPA firms and industry, government, and not-for-profit organization.


During the past few years, PennWest Clarion's accounting degree has been honored with a large number of prestigious badges and rankings. In addition to these accolades, students who sit for the CPA exam demonstrate their preparedness.

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Morgan Douglass

"Studying abroad was definitely a little out of my comfort zone, but I am so glad I went! I would highly recommend this opportunity to other students."



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Samuel Saul Richardson

"I realized that I didn't have enough time to do an entirely new degree, but I thought that the paralegal program would be a great stepping stone. I could use those classes to see if I enjoyed learning about the law while also applying to go to law school."

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Michael Callas

"I received the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation in June of 2018 after passing the exam a few months prior. Clarion was instrumental when it came to placing me in the right position to sit for the exam upon graduating." Read more.

Department Contacts

Dr. Jason Heavilin, chair
334 Still Hall
814 393 2521

Jill Thompson, secretary
814 393 2626

Last Updated 8/14/23