This study utilized qualitative methods to explore perceptions of graduates from Certified Financial Planning Board of Standards, Inc. Registered Programs regarding experiences that impact Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification completion. Participants (N = 16) were classified into four different groups: Certified, In Progress, With Intentions, and No Intentions. In general, the themes that emerged from within case analyses and across cases related to four areas, including preservice experience, intrinsic motivation, employment, and respect for the CFP marks. The results of this study suggest that financial service firms have a number of opportunities to strengthen the interest in a financial planning career and assist recent graduates in their pursuit of CFP certification with time and financial support of the examination process.

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