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3 Great Resources to Kick-Start Your Financial Planning Career

(NewsUSA) - Finding a rewarding career that offers growth potential, work-life balance and the satisfaction of helping others is a key priority for many job seekers. With those goals in mind, a career in financial planning should be a top contender, whether you are just starting out or looking to make a career change.     But once you have decided that financial planning is the field for you, how do you get started? Here are three resources that can help you launch a successful financial planning career.     

1. Guide to Careers in Financial Planning. Based on interviews with leading financial services firms, this guide introduces you to the wide range of career opportunities in the financial planning profession. It identifies typical entry points and career tracks, explores the types of companies that hire financial planners and provides information on how to find financial planning career opportunities. It also includes resources such as a list of recommended questions to ask in a job interview.     

2. Scholarship Programs. Dozens of scholarship programs are available to support you on your professional journey. Some are offered directly through colleges and universities that have financial planning degree and certificate programs. Others are available through nonprofits and organizations like the CFP Board Center for Financial Planning, which administers 16 scholarship programs that help pay for the education and exam requirements to become a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM professional. Financial services firms may offer scholarships or tuition reimbursements to employees to cover the costs of obtaining professional designations and credentials such as CFP® certification --  some of which may be required to advance within the company.     

3. Career Fairs. In-person and virtual career fairs provide valuable opportunities to connect with prospective employers. CFP Board’s spring and fall career fairs are some of the most popular hiring events in the profession, with dozens of firms participating in these online exhibitions. Job seekers can visit employers’ virtual exhibit booths and view open jobs and internships, apply for open positions and interact with employers through one-on-one video meetings and messaging. You can also visit the CFP Board Career Center to browse current job and internship opportunities in financial planning, as well as a collection of articles providing career guidance.     

Other top resources include career offices at your college or university, financial services companies’ career websites and professional organizations that may have a local chapter near you.     

Making the most of these resources will not only help you find a financial planning job, but also support your growth and development as a future financial planning professional. To learn more about CFP® certification, visit the CFP Board website.

Small Businesses Seek Talent, Technology to Succeed

(NewsUSA) - Starting and maintaining a successful small business is a challenge in any setting. For rural entrepreneurs, that struggle is even greater when it comes to accessing capital, high-speed internet and quality workers, according to a survey from SCORE, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping small businesses since 1964.     

SCORE’s Fall 2022 Megaphone of Main Street: The Small Business Rural/Urban Divide surveyed more than 3,000 entrepreneurs and discovered that population shifts away from rural areas are challenging small business owners in desperate need of reliable talent and technology.     

Rural business owners report higher expenses and fewer customers than non-rural counterparts, according to the survey.  Rising fuel costs (49.3%), slowing customer spending (48.6%), tight marketing budgets (47.6%) and a limited local customer base (34.6%) are their most vexing customer-related challenges. In addition, rural businesses are 26% more likely to have trouble finding qualified employees, says SCORE.     

Noting that the technology gap between rural and non-rural businesses persists, SCORE’s survey found that twice as many rural entrepreneurs (19.2%) compared to non-rural entrepreneurs (9%) struggle with access to broadband/high-speed internet, making it harder for them to conduct business, reach customers and grow. Small businesses in both rural and non-rural areas say they’re challenged by a lack of technological knowledge or assistance.     

“As a small business owner in a rural area of Erie County in Western New York, it has been challenging over the last decade to attract staff, being at least a 30-minute drive from the city of Buffalo and the surrounding suburbs,” says Kerry Planck of Alpine Made LLC in South Wales, N.Y. “My latest long-term employee, who lives 30-plus miles away, recently quit, due in part to the long commuting distance and higher gas prices,” she adds. “I generally give six-month raises to my employees; however, they have not kept up with current inflation levels.”     

Planck has worked with SCORE mentor David Bunis for 10 years, most recently on staffing- retention issues. “I was advised by SCORE to work with local colleges to recruit paid student interns,” says Planck. “This has helped me greatly throughout the last two years.”     

SCORE provides tangible solutions for all entrepreneurs in the form of free mentoring from small business experts, as well as online tools and workshops. Local SCORE chapters also offer in-person events and roundtable discussions. Since 1964, SCORE has helped 11 million entrepreneurs start or grow a business.     

Visit for more information and to download the complete Megaphone of Main Street: The Small Business Rural/Urban Divide data report.

Keep Quality Employees With Quality Benefits

(NewsUSA) - Small business owners know that one of the secrets to success is hiring quality employees and keeping them. One of the best ways to keep your best employees happy is by offering a robust benefits plan. In fact, 11 states now mandate that most small businesses offer employees a retirement plan, according to Value Point Associates (VPA), a national Employer Member Association that specializes in offering “large-company” benefits to small and medium-sized businesses.     

VPA leverages the size of its membership to negotiate affordable rates on top-notch employee benefits plans. These plans can be tailored to the needs of a range of small business models.     

“VPA’s association model is likely the easiest employee benefits arrangement in the country for small businesses,” says Michael Schifferle, director of sales and marketing for VPA.     

Some of the distinctive benefits of a VPA membership plan include:     

- Less stress. VPA handles the benefit package administration and design, and small businesses can choose from several programs to select the best fit.     

- More money. Many small employers feel they can’t offer a 401k plan to employees because of the high cost. With VPA’s incredibly reasonable rates, small businesses can offer the retirement savings plans that employees want, which helps them compete with larger businesses for top talent.     

- Less paperwork. VPA also assists its members with administrative tasks and services, including benefit package administration, coordination with payroll services, audits, and Form 5500 preparation and filing.     

- More security. Small business owners appreciate that VPA membership reduces personal ERISA fiduciary liability. By contrast, a larger employer offering a 401k plan serves as the plan’s sponsor itself, which increases liability.     

In addition to retirement plans, VPA offers affordable options for employee health insurance. Employers can explore both traditional group insurance and non-traditional coverage that provide the most flexibility and savings of time and money. VPA helps small businesses stay competitive on the health insurance front by offering employees ICHRA (Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangement), QSEHRA (Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement), and other HRAs, as well as Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts.     

Visit for more information. 

The Key to Post-Pandemic Well-Being Is Lots of Self-Care, Study Reveals

(NewsUSA) - The unprecedented stress caused by the COVID-19 pandemic pushed many to place a renewed importance on their overall health. This led to a new appreciation for self-care as people began to increasingly dedicate time in isolation to themselves. As people resume their pre-pandemic routines, this newfound commitment to wellbeing and self-care is here to stay, according to The Global State of Self-Care Report. Commissioned by Patchology, an award-winning skincare brand focused on patches and masks, it’s the first study to examine consumers’ self-care practices and trends across the spectrum and in multiple countries. According to the report, not only did 67% of U.S. respondents increase their self-care during the pandemic, but 79% of those people intend to prioritize self-care into the future.     

“As a skincare brand, we’ve seen in real time how important self-care has become to our customers,” says Chris Hobson, President and CEO of Rare Beauty Brands. “Now, more than ever, brands must constantly learn about consumer values and adapt product innovation to meet them.”   

 Hobson and the Patchology team are already on the right track -- the report found that globally, a skincare-first approach to self-care emerged over the past few years. In fact, regardless of their age, women have increased the amount of time they spend on skincare daily, averaging about 16 minutes now vs. 12 minutes per day pre-pandemic.     

While time dedicated to skincare has increased, it’s still a fraction of an hour out of a 24-hour day, making it essential for brands to create efficient, high-quality products that can be used by anyone. With over one-third (36%) of the respondents citing stress as a reason to upgrade their skincare routine, making the process simple can be critical for some consumers.     

With Patchology’s extensive collection of fun, easy-to-use products -- everything from eye gels and sheet masks to foot peels and warming hand masks -- consumers can choose their own skincare adventure via a 5- or 10-minute fix or a 60-minute indulgence. According to the report, more than one-third (35%) of the women surveyed intend to buy more eye patches and approximately 25% said they would buy more sheet masks. Even as consumers become more comfortable returning to salons and spas, outside visits aren’t likely to dampen enthusiasm for at-home beauty products.     

The overarching result is … happiness. Increased self-care efforts not only got U.S. consumers through the darkest days of the pandemic, but resulted in a boost in general happiness: 81% of respondents who placed an emphasis on self-care currently describe themselves as moderately to very happy.     

Patchology’s The Global State of Self-Care Report surveyed respondents on their self-care habits, before, during and after the pandemic; how their dedication to the practice has changed or is expected to change looking ahead; how they value certain types of self-care; and the products they see themselves using in the future.     

For additional information on the report findings and to find the right skincare products to fit your routine, visit

Escape to Aruba with Limited-Time Black Friday Deals

(NewsUSA) - As the post-pandemic travel surge continues, consumers are choosing to prioritize experiences over goods, according to a recent CNBC report.     

The travel industry is stepping up to the demand this season with exclusive savings, starting off with the one happy island, Aruba. With breathtaking beaches, diverse cuisine and award-winning hotels and resorts, Aruba is truly a must-see Caribbean destination.     

Experience all this oasis has to offer with Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals at several hotels and resorts, including:     

- Divi & Tamarijn Aruba All-Inclusives. Visitors can save up to 50% on all-inclusive rates with double the amenities across sister properties. Book between November 27- 29, 2022 for travel valid April 1 - December 31, 2023.     

- Hilton Aruba Caribbean Resort & Casino. Save up to 30% when booking seven nights, with daily endless breakfast for two and resort credit. Book between November 25 - 28, 2022 for travel valid January 2 - April 29, 2023, using promotion code P4.     

- Brickell Bay Beach Club & Spa. Enjoy this property’s deluxe room for a five-night vacation for only $145 per night; Brickell Bay also offers a daily breakfast buffet, welcome drink upon arrival, frozen grapes at the pool, ocean-side lounges and huts on Palm Beach. Book between November 15 - 30, 2022 for travel valid November 15, 2022 - April 10, 2023.     

- Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort, Spa & Casino. Save up to 10% with seven-night stay, with a blend of comfort and top-tier experiences over the winter holidays and beyond. Book by November 30, 2022 for travel valid November 30, 2022 - April 30, 2023.     

- Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino. Stay at least four nights at the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino and receive a $100 resort credit when using code ZX0. Book between November 23 - December 4, 2022, for travel valid March 12 - June 30, 2023.     

- Paradera Park. Use promo code SUN22 and receive a 20% discount on all rooms when booking a five-night stay at the Paradera Park this holiday season. Book between November 15 - 30, 2022 for travel valid November 15, 2022 - March 31, 2023.     

- The Mill Resort & Suites. Reserve two nights or more and receive a $50 food and beverage credit; book five nights or more and save 10% on your entire reservation.  Book between November 15 - 30, 2022 for travel valid November 15, 2022 - January 31, 2023.     

- Renaissance Wind Creek Aruba. Use promo code BOG and save up to 50% on reservations. Book between November 25 - 28, 2022 for travel valid November 30, 2022 - December 21, 2023. Extend the savings and lock in a special rate of $2,023 when you reserve your wedding date before December 31, 2022. Contact Renaissance’s wedding planners at [email protected] for more information.     

For exciting activities while in Aruba, check out De Palm Tours for the island’s most popular excursions like snorkeling to the Antilla Shipwreck and sailing on a catamaran cruise. Receive 25% off all tours and activities using code FRIDAY 25. Book between November 25 - 28, 2022.     

Escape the winter chill, and travel to the beautiful beaches of sunny Aruba to enjoy an average temperature of 82°F and 70 square miles of adventure and relaxation.    

The one happy island promises something for everyone.     

For more information, visit     

This material is distributed by Zeno Group, Inc. on behalf of Aruba Tourism Authority. Additional information is available at the Department of Justice, Washington, DC.

Dollar General Shoppers Get Help Choosing Pain Relievers

(NewsUSA) - When shoppers are already in pain, navigating the huge selection of products in the over- the-counter (OTC) pain reliever aisle can feel overwhelming. There’s a lot to choose from, and while different medicines might treat similar ailments, shoppers should be aware that some OTC pain relievers could be a better choice for them based on their personal risk factors or other medications they are already taking.     

To help inform and empower shoppers’ decision-making at the time of purchase, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association Educational Foundation (CHPAEF) -- in partnership with healthcare companies Haleon (formerly GSK Consumer Healthcare), Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc., and Perrigo -- launched a first-ever nationwide pilot program to help educate Dollar General shoppers at the shelf, using QR code technology.     

Consumers scan a code that takes them to an online OTC Pain Relief Interactive Quiz, available in both English and Spanish. The quiz asks shoppers to answer a short set of questions to determine individual symptoms as well as pre-existing medical conditions such as high blood pressure, liver disease, or stomach problems to name a few. Based on the shopper’s responses, the assessment then provides a personalized report on the most appropriate pain relief products that may be right for them.    

The pilot program will be available at nearly 19,000 Dollar General stores in 47 states.     

“Our research showed that QR code technology is a preferred way to access information, and we believe our OTC Pain Relief Quiz is the perfect solution to help support shoppers in the pain category, given the myriad of choices available on the shelf,” says Anita Brikman, executive director of the CHPA Educational Foundation.     

“As people grow more proactive about their health and well-being, manufacturers and retailers have a critical window of opportunity to address consumers’ needs by bridging health literacy gaps in a way that enables safe use and better self-care,” Brikman adds. The pilot program launched on November 6, 2022, and will continue for eight weeks through December 31, 2022.   

Visit for more information.

BookTrib’s Bites: Books to Intrigue and Make You Think

(NewsUSA) -  

Red Chaos“Red Chaos”
by Ed Fuller and Gary Grossman         

In this third book in the Red Hotel series which reads like breaking news, Russian President Nicolai Gorshkov is one step closer to monopolizing the oil industry and funding his expansionism plans past Ukraine and Latvia. Russian-backed attacks have shut down the Suez Canal and other key shipping routes, making it nearly impossible for the West and the Middle East to transport oil.  

One man slips out of the shadows to stop Gorshkov’s maniacal plans: Dan Reilly, a freelance State Department and CIA consultant, who is drawn into a web involving the current American president, a United States senator, a Chinese businessman, and the death of a young girl.

Purchase at

Against The Grain“Against The Grain”
by Anne Dimock  

Every small act of history is a drama of time, place and people. Welcome to Jamestown, New Jersey, where, in 1962-1964, six characters intersect in a conflict of change and complacency. During desegregation battles in the early 1960s, one African American family in a leafy NJ suburb experiences barriers more quiet and hidden than in the South.   When the oldest child, Fleur, a high school student, gets an after-school job in an upscale store on Main Street, she becomes the catalyst for change no one in her town expects. Some want to help her, others want to impede her and some end up doing both. Fleur learns the limits of trusting her future to others, while making and defending her own decisions.

Purchase at

Cherry Bomb“Cherry Bomb”
by Willard Thurston  

An intellectually snobbish, would-be writer living in his employer’s treehouse. The exhibitionist thespian daughter of a beleaguered preacher. A “muscled mercenary thug” with little compunction for killing, whether for hire, vengeance or sport. A sinister Iranian-Russian plot to shuttle a nuclear artillery shell to America’s borders and elicit under-the-radar diplomatic concessions. What do they all have in common?  

A variety of characters, agendas and events head on a collision course toward each other with unexpected results. It’s a tragi-comedy of errors as plans are foiled, idealism and naivete bumble into danger and the wicked are stymied at every turn. Says Beth Kallman at Author Connections: “Taking an intellectual lens to the mayhem of modern society, these are raw, searing reflections of how time, competition and greed are eroding our collective moral compass.”

Purchase at

Alphabet of the Invisible“Alphabet of the Invisible”
by Lev Green  

Our world is blessed with an array of color. Yet for all the color, visible light is a minute part of the much more broad electromagnetic spectrum. More than 99 percent of the electromagnetic spectrum is invisible.  

The same applies when we consider who each of us is as a human being. Appearance is very important. But of immensely greater importance are a large number of qualities that are invisible, as these qualities truly define who we are.  

Here you will find an alphabet of invisibility: 26 invisible qualities that define who we are. Each of the 26 qualities is not adjectival but instead a noun, as each is a powerful force. This is intended as a vehicle for learning and discussion.

Learn more at

NOTE: BookTrib’s Bites is presented by

Four Things Seniors Need to Know About Dental Coverage

(NewsUSA) -  

By Dr. John Yamamoto, Dental Director of Clinical Innovations, Humana

There are far more benefits to healthy teeth and gums than a bright smile. In fact, your oral health greatly impacts your overall health, and that’s especially true for seniors.     

Gum disease affects over two-thirds of adults aged 65 years and older, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and bacteria and inflammation associated with poor gum health and tooth decay raises the risk of developing heart disease and pneumonia, as well as other serious health conditions. Additionally, losing teeth can lead to difficulty eating and nutritional deficiencies.       

Despite the importance of good oral health, dental care often falls by the wayside. According to the Healthy Aging Poll, one in five older adults delayed getting dental care or went without it in the past two years, with cost and lack of dental coverage being major factors.     

Although dental coverage is a highly desired supplement for seniors, Original Medicare does not cover routine dental care and procedures. However, many Medicare Advantage plans do. During this year’s Annual Election Period, which began Oct. 15 and runs through Dec. 7, people eligible for Medicare should consider the following when comparing dental benefits available on Medicare Advantage plans:     

• Will the Plan Meet Your Dental Needs? Carefully review the dental services covered under the plan to ensure they cover the care and procedures you may need in the coming year based on the state of your oral health. If possible, get a dental check-up to learn what your dentist anticipates will be the level of care you’ll require.     

• Is Your Dentist a Network Provider? Even if the plan allows you to receive care from any dentist, it may cost you less to use those within the plan’s network of providers. Check to see if your dentist is on the list of the plan’s network providers; if not, look to see if there are other dentists in your area who are in network.     

• Are Visits Limited? Some plans limit the number of dental visits covered while others allow you to make as many visits as needed until you reach the maximum dollar amount your plan will pay. Not having limits on the frequency of visits will allow you more flexibility to get the services you need, when you need them.     

• Can You Get Care Outside Your State? It’s especially important for those who travel often or are snowbirds spending part of the year in another state to make sure that their dental coverage will cross state lines. For example, Humana’s Medicare Advantage plans offer members in-network care inside and outside of their home state.     

When choosing a Medicare plan, make dental coverage a high priority. Good dental care doesn’t just benefit your teeth, it can improve your health and quality of life.     

Visit or call 1-800-MEDICARE (TTY: 1-877-486-2048) 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can learn about Humana Medicare Advantage plans by going to or calling 1-888-372-2614 (TTY: 711) from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. local time, seven days a week, to speak with a licensed sales agent.

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, HMO SNP, PPO, PPO SNP AND PFFS organization with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in any Humana plan depends on contract renewal. 

Holiday Hosting: The Ultimate Survival Guide for the Season

(NewsUSA) - As the holiday season approaches, the revival of in-person events, celebrations, and activities leaves many excited, yet overwhelmed, but the right holiday helpers can make this busy season pleasant. Finding products that can serve double (or triple) duty is the key to success by saving time, money, and energy. One kitchen staple that may surprise you with its versatility is citric acid powder.   

Move over, vinegar -- there’s a new, natural product workhorse in town that’s about to become your go-to pantry essential and serve as the surprise of the season, helping you through the holidays with everything from cooking to ‘do it yourself’ (DIY) gifting and pampering.     

“Knowing that budgets are tight this year, consumers can afford to be resourceful with the superhero pantry staple that is citric acid powder,” says Curtis Eggemeyer, CEO of Lemi Shine, known for their 100% food-grade citric acid powder. “You’d be surprised how many ingredients you use every day that have citric acid in them -- take a look around -- it’s in everything from snacks to moisturizer.”   

Cooking made smart. Whether you’re the host or a guest, holiday meals are rarely prepared without leftovers in mind. Commonly used as a preservative to prevent spoilage, Lemi Shine’s 100% Food Grade Citric Acid Powder can increase the shelf life of cooked food and will help to keep holiday snacks, sweets, and beverages fresh. Two tips for packing up your party: soak sliced fruit in a citric-acid-and-water solution for minutes to prevent discoloration or sprinkle citric acid over your fresh guacamole to keep it looking delicious throughout the event.     

Citric acid powder is also the key ingredient in some of your favorite recipes. Chocolate Bundt Cake is a tried-and-true crowd pleaser that always has guests coming back for a second slice. You can also create deliciously easy Apple Chips using just three ingredients.       

Gifting made savvy. Budgets are tighter this holiday season. Low-cost gift ideas that anyone can use and appreciate include DIY Bath Bombs and aromatherapy mixes featuring citric acid powder. Combine the powder with some essential oils for aromatherapy – whether it’s lavender to create a calming atmosphere, mood-boosting peppermint to fight fatigue, or fruity and floral bergamot to help relieve stress. These are gifts any host would appreciate receiving.     

Self-care made special. Don’t neglect your own self-care during the holidays. Whether prepping for a big night out or recovering from a family game night in, pampering yourself helps recharge for the holiday season. Try a DIY face mask before or after a holiday event, or anytime you need a little extra TLC. Not to mention, these self-care hacks also double as great gifts.     

Cleaning made simple. Make life easier and opt for cleaning products with a citric acid base when tidying up your home. Citric acid-based products, like Lemi Shine’s, are bleach-free and family-safe, so everyone can chip in on housework.     

To learn more about how citric acid can help you through this holiday season, check out

Campaign Combats Underage Drinking

(NewsUSA) - Underage drinking levels are at historic lows, and one way to continue this trend is to prevent teens’ access to alcohol. The We Don’t Serve Teens campaign, first developed in 2006, is a community-level collaboration of alcohol suppliers, retailers and distributors working with parents and prevention groups to curb underage drinking.     

Today, participating groups and organizations are voicing their commitment to the campaign and its important message that debuts a refreshed look and feel that is digitally modern, culturally inclusive and demographically diverse.     

The We Don’t Serve Teens campaign takes a united stance throughout communities nationwide: “Don’t serve alcohol to teens. It’s unsafe. It’s illegal. It’s irresponsible.” Partners are encouraged to post messages against underage drinking in stores and restaurants, engage with the campaign online, hear messages on the radio and even include information on food and beverage delivery receipts. The materials will also serve as a reminder for families to have conversations at home about expectations, values and practice saying NO to underage drinking.     

“Underage drinking has declined dramatically but remains a safety issue for teens that is often overlooked, disregarded, or takes a backseat to more pressing concerns,” says Chris Swonger, President and CEO of Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) and “The We Don’t Serve Teens campaign brings a critical mass of public and private entities together to spotlight underage drinking prevention. We have made a lot of progress over the years and fewer teens are drinking alcohol. By working together, we hope to make even more progress on this important issue.”     

In 1991, 80% of American teens had consumed alcohol at least once in their lifetime, but today, more than three out of five teens (64%) have never consumed alcohol (Monitoring the Future, 2021). Although this trend is positive, challenges to ending underage drinking remain. The availability of alcohol to those under the legal drinking age remains high with eight out of 10 high-school seniors reporting that it is easy for them to access alcohol. Working together, significant strides have been made in reducing underage drinking, but until it is eliminated, there is still work to be done, according to     

“No retailer wants to sell alcohol to someone who is underage,” says John Bodnovich, Executive Director, American Beverage Licensees. “Retailers are on the front lines in communities across the country -- we are proud to once again lead the effort to prevent underage drinking. We look forward to working with community partners as well as industry partners to keep alcohol out of teens’ hands and stop underage drinking. Responsibility starts with us.”      

Visit for more information or to participate in the campaign.

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