MILWAUKEE, Aug. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- As the demand for financial planning in the United States continues to rise, Northwestern Mutual is providing opportunities to thousands of college students nationwide, this summer and beyond, to learn about careers as financial advisors.

So far in 2014, nearly 3,000 college students have enrolled in Northwestern Mutual's internship program at more than 350 offices around the country. The company expects to provide opportunities to more 500-700 additional students by the end of the year.

According to Northwestern Mutual's 2014 Planning and Progress Study, two-thirds of Americans don't have a long-term financial plan and 71% do not have a financial advisor. Furthermore, the majority (70%) of American adults feel that the economy will experience future crises, and that they need a financial plan to help them weather the ups-and-downs (52%).

"The demand for financial planning has never been higher. And that demand is opening up career opportunities for current college students to learn from the best training program and financial advisors in the business." said Michael Van Grinsven, Northwestern Mutual field internship director. "Through this internship, they are prepared to hit the ground running post-graduation."

Career a Good Fit for Millennials

The financial advisor career is an attractive option for the millennial generation. In fact, nearly one third of Northwestern Mutual's full-time financial representatives are Millennials and that number is expected to climb as the appetite for financial guidance grows among this financially precocious generation.

The 2014 Planning and Progress Study also shows that 61% of Millennials consider themselves to be "highly disciplined" or "disciplined" financial planners, more than those from other age groups. Despite their head start, a solid majority (68%) still see room for improvement in their financial planning, though only a small fraction (13%) currently work with an advisor.

These dynamics, combined with projections that Millennials stand to benefit from roughly $30 trillion in wealth transfer in the next several decades, translate into limitless opportunity for college students exploring an advisor career.

Top-Ranked Internship Program

Since 1967, more than 40,000 students have graduated from Northwestern Mutual's financial representative internship program, which has been recognized for the past 18 years as one of the top ten programs nationwide by the Vault.com. Van Grinsven added that the program is incredibly important for attracting exceptional talent and is an opportunity to build the best and brightest early in their careers.

 "We treat our internships as a year-round program – one that doesn't stop when participants head back to school," Van Grinsven said. "Sixty percent of Northwestern Mutual interns are integrated into their teams for the full year, allowing for a greater depth of both training and mentoring, and building experience beyond the summer months. Of these full-year interns, one third goes on to become full-time financial representatives."

He said many of the company's most successful financial representatives and nearly half of its senior field management are former interns.

Interested applicants can visit Northwestern Mutual's website or contact a nearby Northwestern Mutual office to learn more about available internship opportunities.

About Northwestern Mutual

Northwestern Mutual has helped clients achieve financial security for 157 years. As a mutual company with $1.5 trillion of life insurance protection in force, Northwestern Mutual has no shareholders. The company focuses solely and directly on its clients and seeks to deliver consistent and dependable value to them over time. Northwestern Mutual is the marketing name for The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, Milwaukee, WI, and its subsidiaries. Northwestern Mutual and its subsidiaries offer a holistic approach to financial security solutions including: life insurance, long-term care insurance, disability income insurance, annuities, investment products, and advisory products and services. Subsidiaries include Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC, broker-dealer, registered investment adviser, member FINRA and SIPC; the Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company, limited purpose federal savings bank; Northwestern Long Term Care Insurance Company; and Russell Investments.

SOURCE Northwestern Mutual