On Oct. 7, financial planning students from the Fox School have the opportunity to meet with recruiters and firms for a day of interviewing, professional development and networking. The annual Financial Planning Association’s (FPA) Career Day is how Gavin Maurer, Class of 2022, found his internship. In this four-part series, Fox students share their experiences with summer internships and provide valuable advice for their peers.
Gavin Maurer, Financial Planning Intern at RTD Financial Advisors, Inc.
Maurer transferred to Temple University to pursue finance after obtaining an associate’s degree from Harrisburg Area Community College. During his transfer student orientation, he’d learned about how he could help improve people’s lives through Fox’s financial planning major and decided to pursue it as a double major.
Maurer’s transition to the Fox School has been a success, and in addition to his academic pursuits, he currently serves as an officer of the Adventure Bound Club and a member of Temple’s Financial Planning Association (FPA).
While many students find their dream companies through internet searches, Maurer found his through Fox’s Introduction to Financial Planning course. Representatives from RTD Financial Advisors, Inc. visited to speak with the class, and Maurer felt a strong connection with how much they cared about and wanted to help their clients. Rather than applying online—as many students do—Maurer was able to secure his internship with RTD through the FPA Career Day. When faced with numerous interviews at Career Day, Maurer shares the strategy that helped him persevere:
“I interviewed with seven different firms at the FPA Career Day. One thing that helped me was saving interviews for positions that I wanted most for the end of the day. I did this because it was actually the first time I was interviewing for an internship and I was a bit nervous at the start of the day. I gained a lot of confidence throughout the day and did the best in my last interviews.”
Maurer’s strategy was a success, and he was offered a financial planning internship with his dream company, RTD Financial Advisors, Inc. Understandably, the first couple of weeks of the internship were a bit hectic due to the new work environment and having to learn so many new things. But, Maurer notes that having a supportive company culture and helpful coworkers really helped him quickly adjust to his environment and absorb new ideas.
As a financial planning intern, Maurer worked both remotely and onsite to support financial advisors in different ways. Maurer fulfilled various tasks, such as shadowing advisors as they prepared for and attended client meetings, creating investment policy statements and working on various projects. In addition to learning about general aspects of financial planning, he was also provided the opportunity to focus his training on the area that he was interested in—how to be a support planner.
His internship must have trained him especially well, as Maurer now works full-time as a Financial Planning Analyst with RTD Financial Advisors, Inc.
Considering that this was Maurer’s first internship, he understands it can be daunting to interview for a position without having much relevant experience. For students who might be feeling this way, he has some special advice to bridge the gap:
“I didn’t really have any professional credentials relating to finance or financial planning when I was going into interviews. But I was able to build a connection and show how my experiences from other past jobs could be applied to the role I was interviewing for. For example, I leveraged my previous job at a golf course to show how I was able to build long-term relationships with different clients.”