2020 Top Undergraduate Business Professors: Taylor Nadauld, Brigham Young University (Marriott)

L. Taylor Nadauld of Brigham Young University’s Marriott School is a 2020 Best Undergraduate Business School Professor

Taylor Nadauld

Professor of Finance, Goldman Sachs Distinguished Faculty Fellow

Marriott School of Business, Brigham Young University

After graduating from BYU in 2002, Taylor Nadauld went to work at Goldman Sachs. But it didn’t take long for him to realize he wanted to learn more about finance and the economy in general. And to decide the best way to do that would be to earn a Ph.D. and teach. Nearly two decades later, Nadauld is back at BYU’s Marriott School of Business where he is a professor of finance and the Goldman Sachs Distinguished Faculty Fellow.

Nadauld was picked to this year’s list for the robust number of recommendations and nominations received, his publication history, and awards. Nadauld has won nearly a dozen research and teaching awards since rejoining BYU as a professor in 2009.

Current age: 41

At current institution since what year? 2009

Education: Ph.D. Finance, Ohio State University, BS Economics, Brigham Young University

List of courses you currently teach:  Corporate Finance, Venture Capital/Private Equity


I knew I wanted to be a business school professor when… I started working on Wall Street and realized I needed to learn more about Finance and the Economy more generally.

What are you currently researching and what is the most significant discovery you’ve made from it?

I recently published a paper about the impact that federal student loan availability has on the price of university tuition. I learned that a university education is still the best investment young people can make in themselves, despite the ever-increasing cost of education.

If I weren’t a business school professor, I’d be… an entrepreneur, or trying to work in Private Equity or Venture Capital.

One word that describes my first time teaching:  Exciting.

Here’s what I wish someone would’ve told me about being a business school professor: Research demands are strenuous, but research plays a crucial role in helping students develop critical thinking skills.

Professor I most admire and why: Jim McDonald, my undergraduate Econometrics professor. Dr. McDonald was a charitable, smart, kind, and thoughtful man that had a mastery of his topic. He cared deeply about students, and I felt it.


What do you enjoy most about teaching business students?

I enjoy helping students catch a vision of what kind of success they can have in this world if they work hard and treat people with kindness and respect.

What is most challenging? Grading

In one word, describe your favorite type of student: Engaged.

In one word, describe your least favorite type of student: Disinterested

When it comes to grading, I think students would describe me as… slow


What are your hobbies?

Exercise, enjoying time with family and friends on the lake

How will you spend your summer?

Research, time on the lake

Favorite place(s) to vacation: California beach, Lakes, and swimming holes in the Western U.S.

Favorite book(s): The Wright Brothers, Boys in the Boat

What is currently your favorite movie and/or show and what is it about the film or program that you enjoy so much?

WW2 Documentaries


If I had my way, the business school of the future would have much more of this… Business schools of the future need to help students develop a more complete set of analytical tools, like statistics, data science, econometrics, etc.

In my opinion, companies and organizations today need to do a better job at… Developing leaders with strong ethics.

I’m grateful for… My family, my faith, my colleagues, my students, and my job.

Faculty, students, alumni, and/or administrators say:

“Loved by students for pushing them in how they think and approach problems (well known for lecture on “why study finance” within the aims of an undergraduate education. Started a highly successful PE & VC curriculum (as shown by student engagement and job placements). Significant research published. Has presented research findings to congress.”

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