FPA and College Aid Pro™ to train members on financial aid and late-stage college planning.

DENVER (May 11, 2022) – With over 44 million student loan borrowers in America and outstanding education debt exceeding $1.7 trillion, financial planners can play a pivotal role in helping families plan and pay for college. To help members serve the needs of clients with college-bound children, the Financial Planning Association® (FPA®), the leading membership organization for Certified Financial Planner™ professionals, has partnered with College Aid Pro™ to launch College Planning Made Easy: An FPA Certificate Program.

The certificate course, now available through FPA’s Online Learning Center, is designed to help financial planners better understand how to assist their clients with the important decisions around higher education costs and demystifying financial aid. The course, which qualifies for 4.5 CFP® CE credits, provides a deep dive into not only the technical aspects of navigating the college funding maze, but also practical talk tracks and exercises to help planners connect with their clients and guide them through the behavioral and emotional aspects of the college buying decision. 

“As our members’ partner in planning, FPA constantly seeks ways to support our members and provide opportunities to augment their financial planning knowledge and skills,” says Patrick D. Mahoney, FPA chief executive officer. “Joe Messinger and his team at College Aid Pro™ have a deep understanding of what it takes to plan for and pay for a college education. We are delighted to partner with them to bring their time-tested methodologies to our members so they can best support their clients and their college-bound children.”

The course takes four hours to complete and positions financial planners to:

  • Project a family’s financial aid and out-of-pocket cost at individual institutions
  • Create a college funding plan and ensure students graduate with manageable debt without robbing mom and dad’s retirement
  • Understand the key differences in the federal and institutional formulas used to determine a family’s expected family contribution (EFC) need-based financial aid eligibility
  • Project income and asset strategies to maximize financial aid offers
  • Analyze, compare, and appeal financial aid award letters
  • Anticipate cash flow and tax planning strategies for college
  • Understand the pending changes and planning opportunities due to the FAFSA Simplification Act

“At College Aid Pro™, we know that all too often the college dream is becoming the college nightmare. Families are overpaying for college, derailing retirement, and getting in over the heads with student loans. Part of the problem is that late-stage college planning is an area that the financial planning profession has long ignored,” says Joe Messinger, CFP®, co-founder of College Aid Pro™. “This collaboration with FPA is an incredible opportunity to raise the bar in college funding advice across the industry. This certificate program empowers financial planners with the right training and tools they need to deliver expert college funding advice with confidence and ease. Together, we can end the student loan crisis one family at a time!”

The course is now available to FPA members for a $199 fee. Nonmembers can also take the course for $299. Upon completing the course, financial planners will also receive one-month of complimentary access to the College Aid Pro™ Advisor Workstation and a complimentary 1-on-1 consultation with a member of the College Aid Pro™ team.    


About the Financial Planning Association

The Financial Planning Association® (FPA®) is the leading membership organization for CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM professionals and those engaged in the financial planning process. FPA is the CFP® professional’s partner in planning by helping them realize their vision of professional fulfillment through practice support, learning, advocacy, and networking. Learn more about FPA at financialplanningassociation.org and on Twitter at twitter.com/fpassociation.

About College Aid Pro™

College Aid Pro™ (CAP) is an award-winning SaaS platform that is changing the way America shops for college and empowering families to shop smarter for college. CAP's mission is to End the Student Debt Crisis. Our team of college planning experts created CAP to provide students, families, and the advisors supporting them with the technology, education, and guidance they need to ensure a great return on the college investment. CAP has solutions for everyone trying to navigate the confusing and opaque financial aid process, regardless of socioeconomic status.

Higher education can still be the great equalizer it was intended to be, as long as consumers are appropriately armed with the information and insights they need to make this life-altering decision correctly. This is what CAP provides. Learn more about CAP at www.collegeaidpro.com/for-advisors and connect with Joe Messinger on LinkedIn or via email.