Greg Robert Pierce

Color portrait of Greg Robert Pierce

Associate Teaching Professor in Finance

Department Finance
Office Address 329 Business Building
Phone Number 814-865-8750
Email Address grp3@psu.edu

Download Photo Personal Website


Greg Pierce is a Fellow of the Penn State Student Engagement Academy and an Associate Teaching Professor in Finance in the Smeal College of Business, where he has been on the faculty since 1986. Prior to coming to Penn State full-time in 1999, he held several engineering and financial management positions at Bechtel Power Corporation, Air Products and Chemicals, HRB Systems/Raytheon, and most recently was Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Treasurer of Licom Technologies, Inc.

Expertise

Cryptocurrencies and the blockchain, NFTs, Web 3.0, metaverse, innovation and entrepreneurship, corporate finance, management consulting, personal finance, strategic management, M&A, and engineering entrepreneurship.

Education

MBA, Business Administration, The Pennsylvania State University, 1976

BS, Electrical Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, 1974

Courses Taught

FIN 301 – CORPORATION FIN (3)
Nature of finance function; risk and return concepts; working capital; dividend policies; mergers; security markets; acquisition and management of corporate capital; analysis of operations, forecasting capital requirements; raising capital; and planning profits. Available to Baccalaureate students only. Not available to students who have taken B A 301. FIN 301 Corporation Finance (3) Finance 301, Corporation Finance, is a 3 credit course. FIN 301 is offered, at minimum, once a year during either the fall or spring semester. FIN 301 may not be used to satisfy Smeal College baccalaureate degree requirements. A student may not receive credit toward graduation for both FIN 100 and 301, or for both B A 301 and FIN 301. FIN 301 provides a basic understanding and framework of how firms acquire, allocate, and control their financial resources. It covers the acquisition and management of corporate capital; analysis of operations, forecasting capital requirements, raising capital, and planning profits. This is an introductory finance course focusing on basic financial principles and practices essential to managing a business. In addition, this course also covers financial markets, institutions, organizational forms and investments. FIN 301 relies heavily on accounting and economic principles with a strong emphasis on problem solving and decision making. One objective of this class is to be able to assess the past and present performance of the firm. This can be achieved through vertical and horizontal analysis of the financial statements as well as ratio analysis. Another aspect of this course is the financial planning process. This includes concepts such as pro forma statements, developing the statement of cash flows, as well as the budgeting process through the preparation of the cash budget. Another facet of this class is to understand how financing and investment decisions are made. Students will learn about the time value of money as well as fundamental techniques for valuing financial assets such as stocks and bonds. Additionally, capital budgeting techniques such as the net present value and internal rate of return are explained. Other important objectives include the management of working capital, the determination of the cost of capital, operating and financial leverage, and risk and return. The concepts and tools covered in this class allow the student to gain a fundamental understanding of how the finance function works within the business environment. Finance 301 promotes critical thinking and will enable the student to better integrate the individual functions of a business in order to make good business decisions.

BA 301 – Finance (3)
An overview of finance for non-business majors. Topics include financial markets and institutions, investments, and financial decision making in organizations. B A 301 Finance (3) The goal of BA 301 is to provide insight into the thinking of both the financial manager and the functional manager that is needed to effectively lead and manage not only their business organization but also their personal financial lives. The course will enable the student to learn the key financial concepts, constructs, and models that are used by financial managers every day around the world. Understanding of the mathematics of finance, the use of financial calculators, and development of Excel financial model problem solving will be emphasized. Ethical financial decision-making will be a common theme that is integrated throughout the course. Using a survey overview approach, the first five weeks of the course will cover concepts such as financial statements and analysis, financial ratios and analysis, long-term financial planning and budgeting, time value of money, discounted cash flow analysis, capital budgeting, break-even analysis, and systematic/unsystematic risk. The next five weeks will provide an overview of financial topics that are normally covered in detail in financial markets courses. These topics include financial systems, money markets, the Federal Reserve and monetary policy, derivatives and speculative markets, and legal and operational issues in financial markets. The final five weeks will cover general personal finance topics of interest such as money management strategies, insurance and risk management, consumer credit, tax strategies, investing in stocks, bonds, and Exchange-Traded Funds, and retirement and estate planning. A student may not receive credit toward graduation for both B A 301 and FIN 100, or for both B A 301 and FIN 301.

FIN 301H – Honors Finance (3)
FIN 301H honors course provides insight into real world issues that are needed to effectively run a business. Students will utilize the fundamental concepts learned in finance (integrated with accounting, marketing, management, logistics, operations, and business law/ethics) as a foundation for running a business in the classroom. The "product" in this business will be a comprehensive strategic business plan for a real, live local, state, national, or international business that will serve not only as an articulation of understanding of core course concepts, but also as a supplement to the existing core package of introductory business courses. The honor students in this course will be building their strategic business plan products in electronic format in closely-knit, high performance teams. The strategic plan product development process in this course inherently involves integration across the functional areas of business: marketing, logistics, finance, and management. There is also inclusion and integration of courses in accounting, business law, management information systems, and statistics as applicable. Each student team will allocate product development responsibilities according to areas of expertise and interest. An appropriate balance of students from several majors will be assigned to each group. Class time will involve exchanging information within and across groups and coordinating activities between groups where necessary. Students will periodically meet with individual and team-based corporate mentors who will provide one-on-one advice on an as-needed basis. Students will also receive specialized training in team-based processes, leadership, and technology tools required to implement the products under development. Select members of the Penn State faculty and Smeal College alumni will be on hand at times to provide this specialized training and consulting expertise. Company owners and principals will provide periodic (monthly) reviews of honor students' work to assist them in the development of a first-class, professional business plan product.

B A 301 – Finance (3)
An overview of finance for non-business majors. Topics include financial markets and institutions, investments, and financial decision making in organizations.

FIN 100 – Introduction to Finance (3)
The nature, scope, and interdependence of the institutional and individual participants in the financial system. May not be used to satisfy Penn State Business baccalaureate degree requirements. Not available to students who have taken B A 301 or FIN 301.

FIN 496 – Independent Studies (3)
Creative projects, including research and design, which are supervised on an individual basis and which fall outside the scope of formal courses.

FIN 305 – Financial Management of the Business Enterprise (3)
Development of advanced practices of financial management and their application to decision making in business firm.

FIN 494 – Research Projects (Variable)
Supervised student activities on research projects identified on an individual or small-group basis.

B A 301H – Junior Honors Core Finance (2)
This course provides an overview of finance. The primary focus is on financial decision making in organizations - also known as corporate finance. In addition to corporate finance, the course also covers the two other primary areas of finance: financial m

ENGR 411 – Entrepreneurship Business Basics (3)
Three critical entrepreneurship skills are covered for non-business majors: business finance, intellectual property, and marketing.

B A 296 – Independent Studies (variable)
Creative projects, including research and design, which are supervised on an individual basis and which fall outside the scope of formal courses.

B A 304H – Management and Organization (2)
Introduction to key concepts for the design and management of organizations.

FIN 305W – Financial Management of the Business Enterprise (3)
Development of advanced practices of financial management and their application to decision making in a business firm.

Selected Publication

Pierce G. R., Simpson T. W., Kisenwether E. C., "Driving Entrepreneurial Innovation Through the Learning Factory: The Power of Interdisciplinary Capstone Design Projects." vol. CIE 2013, 2013, pp. 1-12