Planning for Professors

Planning for Members of the Academic Community
Client Type:
Professor, married with 2 children

Client Profile: This client’s situation is similar to that of many professors, both male and female. He has worked as a professor for 20+ years, and although he has plans to retire, he would like to continue pursuing independent consulting work to stay in academia.

Action Plan: We discussed his goals at length and provided a comprehensive review of his finances. His profession brought with it three common issues that impact many professors.

  1. Financial security. Financial security is important to everyone, but in this case, our client was particularly concerned with his future stability. We developed:
    • A complete financial plan that accounts for personal and family goals and considers multiple scenarios, increasing the potential likelihood of goal achievement
    • Income strategies for today and for the future, as they pursue an ideal retirement
    • A properly diversified investment strategy that addresses goals while respecting risk tolerance, providing potential protection during market downturns
  2. Retirement. In addition to his current income and expense concerns, this client was focused on his state pension, social security, and additional retirement accounts. Along with his career as a professor, he also did independent consulting work. We:
    • Suggested having a separate retirement account for his self-employment income and determined a retirement income strategy for existing assets. An important element of this review was making sure that he retained a properly diversified investment portfolio.
    • Explored additional savings vehicles and other tax minimization strategies to protect as much of the asset pool as possible for the future.
  3. Life insurance and long-term care. As our client had a life insurance and long-term care policy independently from the institution, we focused on:
    • The value of a unified financial plan
    • Strategies to protect against potential sources of liability
    • Insurance coverage options, including disability and other advanced risk management options


The preceding is a hypothetical case study and is for illustrative purposes only. Actual performance and results will vary. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. This study does not represent actual clients. Any resemblance to actual people or situations is purely coincidental. Diversification does not assure a profit or protect against loss in declining markets, and diversification cannot guarantee that any objective or goal will be achieved. Fixed insurance products and services are offered by Robert L. Stern Financial Services.