A look back at 10 years of student-advisor connections at National LINC

A look back at 10 years of student-advisor connections at National LINC

Nicole Iteffa | February 26, 2019

Ten years ago, ten students from Texas Tech University accepted the invitation to attend National LINC—a conference hosted by TD Ameritrade Institutional which brings thousands of independent registered investment advisors together each year for learning and networking. And with that, the NextGen at LINC program was born.

NextGen at LINC is designed to give college financial planning students a first-hand look at what the industry has to offer. They attend specially designed seminars, meet with industry leaders, and get valuable opportunities to interact with advisors. Over the years, the program has grown dramatically, with 63 students from 30 universities—including four historically black colleges and universities—attending the 2019 conference in early February.

Sometimes, the connections made at National LINC open up new opportunities for students and advisory firms. “We’re regularly hearing stories about students who either land an internship or receive full-time job offers after meeting advisors at the conference,” said Kate Healy, Managing Director, Generation Next at TD Ameritrade Institutional.

One such student is Kelly Bradley, who attended National LINC 2017 while she was a student at Temple University. While at the conference, she met Marjorie Wentz from Trinity Wealth Management. The two formed a connection from the start, and by the end of the conference Kelly was approaching Marjorie about an internship. Even though Marjorie had never considered having an intern, she eventually said yes. And now, Kelly works full-time as an advisor for Trinity Wealth Management and the two attended National LINC 2019 to share their story.

Other success stories, including that of Kelly McNerney, CFP®, happen regularly at National LINC. She attended in 2013 and met her current employer, FJY Financial.

“The average age of financial advisors is 50. As more and more advisors get ready to retire, the industry faces a huge talent shortfall,” said Healy. “TD Ameritrade Institutional had the foresight to do something about this early on. Today, we have a thriving program that helps bring new and diverse talent into the industry.”