Celebrating the Outstanding Seniors In Personal and Family Financial Planning From The Class of 2023

May 18, 2023

The Norton School of Human Ecology celebrates 9 graduating seniors in the Personal and Family Financial Planning program for their outstanding achievements over the course of their undergraduate career.

Norton School of Human Ecology, Grad Blast, Graduation Photo, Awards Ceremony

As the academic year draws to a close, the Norton School of Human Ecology recognizes the outstanding achievements of their graduating students. These awards serve as a testament to the dedication, hard work, and exceptional talent displayed by these individuals throughout their academic journey. From accolades in various fields of study to leadership honors and community service recognitions, these awards celebrate the diverse accomplishments and contributions of the graduating class. Join us as we highlight the remarkable achievements of these deserving students who have left an indelible mark on the school and are ready to make a positive impact in their respective fields. 

Personal and Family Financial Planning Award Winners

Maria Manzo | Outstanding Senior Award 

Zach Goodwin | Student Achievement Award 

Joshua Nybroten | Silent Leader Award 

Anthony Georgeadis | Relentless Award 

Ben Katsel | Faculty Recognition Award 

Jake Sierka | Faculty Recognition Award 

Jimmy Gonzalez Gomez | Faculty Recognition Award 

Johanna Quintero Vega | Tenacity Award 

Jenn Ma | Perseverance Award 


Ben Katsel
Ben Katsel, Norton School of Human Ecology, PFFP Award Winner

Ben Katsel, a Personal and Family Financial Planning major with a minor in Sports Management, proudly represents Tucson, Arizona.

Passionate about assisting others, nurturing relationships, and delving into the realms of athletics and finance, Ben is an avid learner. His campus involvement spans across various organizations, including the Arizona Athletics Department, Sports Marketing Association, the COVID Ambassador Team, and membership in InternshipU.

The Norton School's Personal and Family Financial Planning program has provided Ben with invaluable guidance in career selection and educational aspirations. It has illuminated a captivating realm within finance that fuels his enthusiasm, while also demonstrating the boundless possibilities within the industry. Among his cherished experiences, Ben holds Estate Planning with Dr. Rosen as his favorite class and fondly remembers creating a financial plan in Dr. Payne's class.

Currently, Ben is on the path to becoming a financial advisor with a national firm, with plans to work at a branch in Tucson. His estimated start date is anticipated to be in late August or mid-September.


Jenn Ma, Norton School of Human Ecology, PFFP Award Winner

Jenn Ma 

Jenn Ma is a Personal and Family Financial Planning international student originally from Guilin, Guangxi, located in the southern part of China. Prior to her enrollment at The University of Arizona, Jenn was enrolled at Portland Community College. 

Jenn has a deep passion for helping and serving others, finding a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment in making a positive impact on people's lives. Additionally, she enjoys traveling to different places, as it allows her to broaden her perspective, gain diverse life experiences, and cultivate inclusivity and sensitivity by engaging with various cultures and social norms. 

“The Personal and Family Financial Planning program has been life-changing for me,” Ma said. “It led me to the gate of the financial services industry where I learned abundant knowledge and skills in personal and family wealth management, which can be applied not only to myself and my family but also to my career as a financial planner.  

Among her favorite classes, Professional Conduct and Fiduciary Responsibility stands out. Through this course, she delved into the realm of ethics in the industry, analyzing profoundly enlightening case studies. Jenn's future plans involve first securing a position with a wealth management company in the United States and applying for a work visa. Subsequently, she intends to study for her Certified Financial Planner (CFP) exam and earn the certification after gaining substantial working experience. Her aspirations align with building a successful career as a financial planner and contributing to the financial well-being of individuals and families. 


Jimmy Gonzalez Gomez
Jimmy Gonzalez Gomez, Norton School of Human Ecology, PFFP Award Winner

Jimmy Gonzalez Gomez is a Personal and Financial Planning student from Yuma, AZ. Throughout his academic journey, Jimmy has found fulfillment in working as a Resident Assistant and contributing to the campus community. 

Among his favorite courses, Jimmy particularly enjoyed Retirement Planning, finding it highly engaging and interesting. He considers himself fortunate to have been part of The Norton School and to have had the opportunity to connect with the exceptional faculty members who have made a positive impact on his education. 

Currently, Jimmy is continuing his internship while actively searching for a full-time position. He is focused on finding a client services role that will serve as a steppingstone towards his goal of becoming a Financial Advisor. Jimmy is eager to embark on the next chapter of his life and is determined to make a meaningful contribution in the field of Personal and Family Financial Planning. 


Jake Sierka, Norton School of Human Ecology, PFFP Award Winner

Jake Sierka

Jake Sierka is a Personal and Family Financial Planning major originally from Phoenix, Arizona. He has actively immersed himself in the field of personal finance through his involvement in clubs and work experiences. In his last semester, Jake held the position of Vice President in the Financial Freedom Club, contributing to his knowledge and leadership skills. Outside of academia, he has been interning with a Perigon Wealth Management company for an entire year, gaining invaluable real-world experience. 

“The Personal and Family Financial Planning major at the Norton School of Human Ecology really accelerated my career,” Sierka said. “My major enabled me to build relationships with other students and faculty that I couldn't have done anywhere else. The classes are small and personal attention is given to each student.” 

Jake particularly enjoyed the diverse range of classes offered in the program, each focusing on a distinct aspect of financial planning. 

Post-graduation, Jake plans to continue his journey with Perigon Wealth Management, having recently accepted a full-time position. He also aspires to sit for the CFP(r) exam in November, a significant milestone that will further elevate his career prospects and professional standing in the industry.