Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. has launched a new mentoring program for female college students looking to enter the financial advisory business. The new program, LIFT University, was introduced at the firm’s annual Ladenburg Institute of Women & Finance Symposium, held this week in Dallas.
The firm, which has over 4,300 advisors across five independent broker/dealer subsidiaries, paid the travel and lodging expenses for 10 female college students to attend the conference. Each student was paired with an experienced female advisor mentor to guide them through the event, discuss how to be successful in this industry and provide a career resource after the event concluded. Students joined from the University of Georgia, the University of Central Missouri, Southern Methodist University and Texas Women’s University.
The idea is to explore new avenues for attracting future female advisor talent. It’s also a move to look for new talent at colleges and universities with strong certified financial planning programs, as opposed to the training programs at the wirehouses or employee model b/ds.
“As more women take on roles as financial decision makers, breadwinners and heads of their households, the financial advice industry must evolve to better reflect this audience and create solutions that meet their specific needs,” said Jaime Desmond, COO of Ladenburg Thalmann Asset Management and chairman of LIWF’s Steering Committee. “Hiring, training, and bringing together more women advisors is a major aspect of accomplishing that goal.”
The Ladenburg Institute of Women & Finance was established in 2012. It’s a group within the firm that is tasked with promoting the professional growth and success of the firm’s women advisors.
Another initiative, announced last spring, included a partnership with The W Source, a networking organization for female professionals, with the goal of helping the b/d network’s female advisors promote their businesses locally.