At the Financial Planning Association (FPA), cultivating and nurturing a sense of community for CFP® professionals and those who support their success is one of our most important mandates. The FPA Annual Conference provides an exceptional forum for members and non-members alike to access and get involved with the diverse and specialized communities available through the association, each centered on specific affinities and objectives designed to support a continuous learning environment.

We want to see you at the FPA Annual Conference in Chicago, Illinois, October 3-5 this year! Our plan is to give you every opportunity to gain exposure to the best and brightest in the world of financial planning. No matter where you are in your Financial Planning career, the FPA Annual Conference is for you!

If you’re a full-time student, your registration fee for the entire conference is just $199.

There’s a lot to pack into three days, so here are some highlights to help you plan your time in Chicago:

Conference Mentoring
Student attendees will be automatically enrolled in our Conference Mentor program! As a mentee, you will be paired with an experienced FPA member leading up to the annual conference. Your conference mentor will answer questions, offer guidance, share lessons learned about the profession, provide tips on how to get the most out of FPA and the conference, and most importantly be a friendly face to connect with.

Student-Specific Programming
Education sessions geared specifically toward you! Featuring concepts for personal and professional development that will supplement your traditional undergrad coursework and help prepare you for life after graduation. Titles include: Getting Hired and Succeeding in Financial Planning; The Career Paths of Financial Planning; What Does it Mean To Be a CFP®?; Lessons Learned from the Past to Help Us Grow in the Future

New Planner Breakfast & Conference Orientation
Don’t miss the chance to meet your fellow young professionals over coffee and breakfast before the first General Session. Hear from leaders in your community and learn how to maximize the conference for your personal gain, and how else you can give back to the profession outside of the conference.

CFP Board Experience Requirement Hours
FPA has partnered with CFP Board to provide student attendees with hours toward their Experience Requirement leading to certification.

In-person Interviews
Several firms will be offering one-on-one interviewing opportunities while in Chicago. Early sign-up is not necessary, and times/locations will be made available on-site.

FPA NexGen
Find your place at FPA with FPA NexGen! Visit the NexGen Gathering space in the exhibit hall for coffee and conversation in a comfortable and casual setting. Attend the NexGen Town Hall where the vision and goals for 2019 will be announced. Be inspired by the NexGen Mini Talks featuring speakers who offer an inside view on what is potentially transforming our profession in radical ways, disrupting every planner and/or client alike, and what we can do about it. You might even be lucky enough to snag a limited-edition T-Shirt!

Financial Planning Challenge
Watch your fellow students compete in the Financial Planning Challenge. See them in action as they present their case studies and participate in the “How Do You Know?” Challenge.

Power Networking Reception
Enjoy food and drinks with your peers, while also engaging in deep conversation with visionaries and leaders from within the profession on topics of immediate interest to students, new planners and career changers. Topics will include how to land a great job, how to move up in your firm, building out a practice, how to inspire change, etc.

Academic Research Presentations
Don’t miss this opportunity to hear professors and Ph.D. students present leading-edge, unpublished research that impacts the financial planning profession. This series of 9 research presentations is brought to you by the Journal of Financial Planning and the Academy of Financial Services. Researchers will have 15 minutes to present, followed by Q&A. Two cash prizes for the best research presented will be awarded onsite.

Join us in Chicago as we introduce our international guests to the Windy City and Chicago financial planners. International registrants will have the option to participate in a day of self-guided tours and office visits, followed by an International Reception on Tuesday, October 2. As the FPA Annual Conference activities and sessions begin on Wednesday, October 3, attendees should plan to partake in select sessions targeted towards international audiences, or those marked as being applicable to an international financial planners.

Register Today
Tuesday, October 2
7:00 – 8:30 a.m.

Sponsored by PlanPlus (this portion of the event is free to all international attendees and attendance is not capped). Pre-registration required.

9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Chicago Mercantile Exchange

The CME was founded in 1898 as the Chicago Butter and Egg Board. 120-years later, the CME Group is the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace. The group will be welcomed by CME Senior Executives who will provide an overview of the derivatives marketplace followed by a tour of the CME Global Command Center (GCC). The GCC is the 30,000 square-foot space that serves as the high-tech technology hub that support the operation of the CME Group’s electronic trading operations.

10:15 – 11:15 a.m.
Federal Reserve of Chicago Tour

Presentation by Fed leader and tour of the Money Museum. The United States Federal Reserve System was created in 1913. The Federal Reserve of Chicago is one of twelve regional Reserve Banks in which Charles Evans, the Chicago Fed Bank President, serves as a member the influential Federal Open Market Committee. Participants will enjoy presentations on the Chicago Fed which include an address by Chicago Fed officials along with a tour of bank’s “Money Museum.” Come see the $1 million cube, $50,000 in coins and free money! (shredded U.S. currency that is)

11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Chicago Board Options Exchange

The CBOE was the country’s first marketplace for trading listed options. Now one of the world’s largest exchange holdings companies, participants will learn the basics of options and risk management over a provided lunch followed by a rare opportunity to tour the CBOE exchange trading floor.

1:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Morningstar Corporate Headquarters

A fantastic opportunity to engage with Morningstar CEO Kunal Kapoor and staff to learn about advancements in behavioral finance and industry trends. Participants will engage with Morningstar’s Design Team and serve as judges that may determine future design and software solutions for the financial services industry.

3:30 – 4:00 p.m.
Millenium Park

The tour group will convene at Chicago’s famous Millenium Park for a group photo in front of Cloudgate (known as the bean).

The tour ends and we highly recommend continuing your tour of Millennium Park, grab a drink at the Park Grill or across the street at Cindy’s Rooftop Bar for amazing views of Chicago’s skyline.

5:30 p.m.
Arrive back at hotel
6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
International Reception

Attendees are invited to attend an exclusive reception designed to provide an opportunity to meet VIPs and fellow global guests attending FPA Annual Conference. Cost is $100/person. Email [email protected] to register or for more information.

Want to take a deeper dive into discussion for topics of interest to you? FPA’s Knowledge Circle hosts will be hosting conversations during the conference to enable attendees to talk further about conference sessions, issues related to Knowledge Circle content, specialized topics and more.
Knowledge Circles include:

    • International and Cross-border
    • Retirement Planning
    • PridePlanners/Diversity
    • Women and Finance
    • Business Success
    • Tax and Estate Planning
    • Applied Behavioral Economics
    • Public Policy & Regulation
    • CFP Board’s Code of Ethics and Standard of Conduct

Check out the conference guide to find the Knowledge Circle sessions of interest to you. We look forward to seeing you there!

Questions regarding FPA Communities or Knowledge Circles? Contact us at [email protected]!

FPA NexGen Mini Talks – Submissions Due August 13
NexGen Members Can Win a Free Registration and a Chance to Speak at 2018 FPA Annual Conference!


We are excited to announce the return of FPA Mini Talks at the FPA 2018 Annual Conference in Chicago, IL on October 3-5, 2018. This year, up to four current FPA members will each be selected to present for 10 minutes within this year’s theme: DISRUPTION.

We are looking for explosive and forward-focused presentations that appeal to a broad CFP® audience of all generations. Your submission can span the wide range of topics falling into the category of disruption, with a focus on areas critically impacting the future of the profession. For example, starting a firm, transforming your firm, expanding a niche or driving financial planning for the future. These are just ideas to help you get started, and should certainly not restrict your submission. If your topic does not meet the session theme, it will not be considered for selection.

To learn more about eligibility and submission guidelines, please click HERE. See you in Chicago!

We value our members of the academic community and we invite you to potentially be a part of the 2018 FPA Annual Conference, Oct. 3-5, 2018 in Chicago.

The Journal of Financial Planning invites you to submit extended abstracts (1,000 to 1,500 words) of unpublished research papers on all topics of financial planning in consideration for presentation at the FPA Annual Conference, Oct. 3–5, 2018 in Chicago.

The research presentations will be co-sponsored with the Academy of Financial Services (AFS). Answers to some frequent questions:

  • Call for Papers closes May 15
  • Submissions are free
  • We accept research on all aspects of financial planning
  • Researchers can submit the same research for consideration to both AFS and Call for Papers
  • One presenter will receive free registration to the FPA Annual Conference
  • Email [email protected] for submission guidelines or to submit your abstract today.

A blind peer review process will choose nine pieces of unpublished research to be presented in 15-minute time slots.

In the past, these sessions, which are well received and well attended, are helpful for planners and academics both to:

  • Learn what topics are at the forefront of financial planning research
  • Ask researchers questions
  • Provide valuable input that researchers can utilize in developing full research papers

Some of the research chosen has also subsequently been published in the Journal of Financial Planning after the conference.

The chosen presenters will be eligible for two $500 cash prizes for the best applied and the best theoretical research.

The winners at 2017 FPA Annual Conference for the best theoretical research were Sonya L. Britt-Lutter, Ph.D., CFP®; Cassandra Dorius, Ph.D.; and Derek R. Lawson, CFP® for their presentation titled, “The Financial Implications of Cohabitation”; and the winners for the best applied research awarded to Sarah Asebedo, Ph.D.; and Martin Seay, Ph.D., CFP® for the research titled “Financial Self-Efficacy and the Saving Behavior of Older Pre-Retirees.”


2018 winners will be introduced at the 2018 conference.

The 2017 FPA Annual Conference Diversity Scholarship recipients are:


Boyd, from Long Beach, Calif., is a 2nd-year Ph.D. student at Kansas State University where she is studying financial planning and therapy. She is an active leader in the FPA of Orange County chapter where she volunteers to support chapter advocacy and pro bono financial planning efforts. She is the founder of Long Beach Financial Planning Day and her work in the community has been recognized by federal, state and local lawmakers and civic organizations.


Ma is a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) professional and founder of lifelaidout, LLC. in New York, NY. Active in pro bono financial planning, he supports the programs offered by the FPA of New York chapter and has worked directly with the New York Public Library, Prep for Prep, and Youth Venture, among other organizations.


Mehta is a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) professional and president of Mehta Financial Group, LLC. in Richmond, Va. Recognized as one of InvestmentNews’ “40 Under 40” in 2016, he immigrated from India when he was five years old and personally experienced many of the challenges that most immigrants face when moving to a new country. These experiences have led him to take on leadership roles in the Indian-American community where he is also providing pro bono support and education.

The scholarship is awarded to financial services students and professionals who demonstrate and act upon an intense desire to promote diversity in the financial planning profession. Criteria for applicants includes:

  • Raising awareness of the profession in diverse communities;
  • Serving diverse communities with financial planning; and
  • Increasing professional opportunities for diverse communities within the financial planning profession.

The Diversity Scholarship Program is sponsored by the FPA Diversity Committee. The Committee’s mission is to develop strategies to raise awareness and promote inclusiveness of diverse communities including but not limited to: age, race, ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation in the financial planning profession. FPA strives to increase professional opportunities for the widest spectrum of people so that all may join and thrive in the financial planning profession.

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