Presidential Scholars Theses (1990 – 2006)


Open Access Presidential Scholars Thesis

First Advisor

Arthur Cox, Advisor


Financial planners--Vocational guidance;


Financial literacy in the United States stands at about 18% of the population according to the Investor Protection Trust's 1996 Investor Knowledge Survey. This figure includes the infamous baby-boomer generation which is now in the process of thinking about retirement and making major financial decisions. This need has fueled the growth of the financial services industry and particularly the field of financial planning. People today feel inadequate to the task of organizing their financial situation and making sound investment decisions. For help with this situation they often turn to a personal financial planner. But the search for a competent, trustworthy planner may be just as daunting as the thought of organizing their own finances. The problem lies in the fact there is little government regulation of the industry, no educational requirements, and little protection from fraud of the consumer. What potential clients do face is a baffling number of abbreviations for designations, associations, and services. To top it off, planners are compensated in a wide variety of ways and the consumer is left to judge which is the most appropriate without the opportunity to make a mistake or error in judgement. Yet they want to make a good decision since, after all, this is their hard earned money they're dealing with. Despite all of these daunting industry characteristics there is still a high demand for personal financial planners and those considering this field as a career can create their own path to success. It just takes some time to sort through the popular literature and develop an understanding of the basics of the industry and what it takes to succeed. This paper is devoted to making this task a lot easier by laying a foundation of the terms, conditions, trends, and nature of a career in financial planning.

Date of Award



Department of Finance

Presidential Scholar Designation

A paper submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation Presidential Scholar


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Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF (15 pages)

Date Digital



©1997 Mikol Sesker





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