Eve Pentecost, CFP® is an assistant professor at The University of Alabama, working with students from across the country – and even outside it – as they prepare for rewarding careers and enrich their knowledge in consumer affairs and financial planning. Her appreciation for money and how to treat it was evidenced from a young age when she used to iron all of her dollars.
“When I would bring home A’s, my dad would give me a little money, and I never really had any money, so that’s why I ironed it, because I was so happy to get some! By the time I was in high school, I had a little money and I was able to open a bank account,” she said.
Eve took that passion for money management and pursued a rewarding career in financial planning. After completing her undergraduate degree, she earned a double master’s from UA with concentrations in Consumer Economics and Family Financial Planning and Counseling (FFPC). Along with some industry experience at a fee-only firm, she has stayed with UA ever since, now an assistant professor and program director in the College of Human Environmental Sciences (HES).
Eve’s passion for behavioral finance and empowering others compelled her to launch the University’s financial planning and consumer affairs degree programs online in 2007. For over a decade, The University of Alabama has offered a bachelor’s in Consumer Sciences with a concentration in Consumer Affairs and a bachelor’s and master’s in Consumer Sciences with concentrations in FFPC – 100% online. Both of the FFPC programs are registered with the CFP™ and AFCPE® and prepare graduates to sit for professional licensure exams. As program director, Eve supervises, advises and teaches in these programs.
“We are proud of the strong advising we offer students, so that we don’t waste their time. That is very important to us,” she said.
The University of Alabama’s College of Human Environmental Sciences, home to one of the nation’s first totally online undergraduate financial planning degree program, has continued to look for innovative ways to connect with and empower students in the financial planning and counseling fields.
“We’re always looking for new ways of doing things, and I love to stay on top of the technology. We started using Flipgrid,” a video-based discussion tool, “in several different courses this semester, and it helps put a name and a face together so we can connect better and drive successful engagement. We use Zoom video conferencing a lot, too, which means I can connect with students in Trinidad or just down the road. How else would I get to interact with so many amazing students?”
Eve has also used Zoom to give distance students the opportunity to hear from nationally recognized experts and speakers in the field, such as Garrett Planning Network’s Sheryl Garrett, who is part of a Zoom conference presentation open to students of the University’s FFPC and Consumer Affairs programs in November 2019.
Outside the classroom, Eve has also spent time connecting with and empowering others, leaving a great and continuing impact. For eight years, she served as the personal finance columnist for a newspaper, educating everyday people on financial matters. And just a few years ago in her research for a class on consumer protection, she noticed continued attention on a particular chemical in the literature and wrote the Human Exposure to Bisphenol A (BPA) resolution for the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, which was later passed as a national resolution. She has volunteered countless hours working with civic programs like Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA), where she helps community members prepare their tax returns, and State Health Insurance Plan (SHIP), where she helps families save money on prescription drug and insurance costs during Medicare open enrollment. These service opportunities are also available to students of the program; distance students have completed practicums and internships across the country.
“Part of my passion for teaching is because I care deeply about students,” Eve said. “Our students have families and busy lives, and getting to know them and helping them reach their career goals is the best part of my job. Since the start of this semester I enjoyed hearing from former students in Louisiana and Indiana who had passed their CFP exam and another in Georgia who passed the AFC exam. I am happy in my position and when I go to bed at night I think about how to improve my courses and create more opportunities for my students.”
Guest Contributor: BamaByDistance
For more information about the degree programs below, please visit our website, BamaByDistance.ua.edu/afcpe
Bachelor’s in HES, Consumer Sciences, concentration in Consumer Affairs
Bachelor’s in HES, Consumer Sciences, concentration in FFPC
Master’s in Consumer Sciences, concentration in FFPC