Derek Lawson

Derek Lawson

Assistant Professor
Undergraduate Program Director

Contact Information

343J Justin Hall

Courses I Teach

  • PFP 468 - Professional Practice Management in Personal Financial Planning
  • PFP 472 - Personal Income Tax Concepts
  • PFP 482 - Personal Investment Concepts II
  • PFP 579 - Pre-Internship Orientation in Personal Financial Planning
  • PFP 772 - Personal Income Taxation
  • PFP 808 - Research Application in Personal Financial Planning
  • PFP 956 - Clinical Research and Applications in Financial Counseling and Planning


  • Ph.D. in Personal Financial Planning, Kansas State University
  • M.S. in Family Studies and Human Services with an emphasis in Personal Financial Planning, Kansas State University
  • B.B.A. in Finance, University of Iowa

Professional Biography

Derek Lawson, Ph.D., CFP®, is an Assistant Professor and the Undergraduate Program Director of Personal Financial Planning at Kansas State University in Manhattan, KS, and a Partner at Priority Financial Partners, based in Durango, CO. His research is practitioner-focused, allowing him to combine his past and present experience as a financial planner with his research interests. Lawson's research focuses on relationship dynamics, physiological stressors, financial anxiety, behavioral finance, and consumption decisions, with a primary focus on younger adults not near retirement. His work has been published in the Journal of Financial Planning, Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning, Financial Services Review, and the Journal of Financial Therapy, among others, and he has co-authored a few book chapters. One of his research pieces, "Integrating behavioral finance, financial psychology, and financial therapy theory and techniques into the financial planning process", was recognized by the Journal of Financial Planning and the Financial Planning Association as the 2018 Montgomery-Warschauer award-winning article. Derek has previously served as the Secretary for FPA NexGen, the Director of NexGen for FPA of Greater Kansas City, the Treasurer of the Financial Therapy Association, and the Marketing Coordinator for NAPFA Genesis.

When not at the university or helping clients with their finances, Derek enjoys playing ice hockey and being outdoors with his wife, Ashley, their two daughters, Raelee and Ridley (R-Squared), and their two dogs.