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Graduate Student Pursues Finance To Impact Africa

When Theodore Bitty graduated from high school, he knew he wanted to make a difference in his community in West Africa—he wanted to create jobs and have a positive impact on the economy. With that in mind, Bitty moved to Houston where he earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of Houston and is currently working on his Masters of Science in Finance at the University of St. Thomas.

The Master of Science in Finance is a new program under the Cameron School of Business designed to serve the needs of working professionals in the finance field. The program covers many aspects of finance, from investment theory to financial management and international finance. In its inaugural year, Bitty will be one of the first students to benefit from the program.

The MSF program allows Bitty to fulfill two lifelong dreams—earn a master’s degree and become a successful business person. As each day leading up to his May graduation passes, Bitty is one day closer to serving his West Africa home. Still, Bitty knows he has a lot to learn.

“Before I create my business, I would like to work in investment banking so I could teach people how to use and save their money,” Bitty said. “Something people in West Africa do not know is how to invest their money. If people can increase the money they have, it will have a good impact on the economy. That is something that is very important to me; I want to reduce the unemployment rate in West Africa.”

Bitty is making the most of his time in Houston. Outside of his studies he enjoys the Houston weather, spending time with friends and family in the area, and he looks forward to the Houston Rodeo each spring. He is taking advantage of the opportunities attending UST provides and is actively searching for an internship in finance or accounting this spring.

“While the MBA concentration in finance is aimed at educating a manager equipped with financial knowledge and financial visions, students in the MSF program are trained to be a competent agent in financial industry or the financial sectors of other industries,” said Dr. Yiying Cheng, professor of finance. “Our rigorous training also prepares students for the Chartered Financial Analyst designation, which is the most prestigious and highly-regarded designation in the financial industry.”

In studying finance, Bitty is preparing himself for the rigors of being an investor and businessman. His courses on investment theory and international finance are laying the groundwork to help Bitty achieve his dreams and help the people of West Africa.

As Bitty continues to move forward in his life journey he is on the verge of multiple possibilities and is eager to move forward. But even he does not know what his future has in store.

“I don’t know yet,” Bitty said. “I have to study the market at the time I am going to open my business. I want to have a big impact on West Africa, so I have to see what people need right there.”

Still, Bitty knows he will be prepared.

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