Long-time readers know we've done The White Coat Investor Scholarship for years, giving out as much as $100,000 in cash and prizes. However, in 2019 we started doing another award, this time for attending level physicians and dentists. This is the financial educator award for people who are trying to boost financial literacy among their colleagues, trainees, and students. In 2019, Dr. Gaurava Agarwal received this recognition.
The primary mission of The White Coat Investor is to “help those who wear the white coat get a fair shake on Wall Street,” which primarily means boosting financial literacy among professionals like physicians, dentists, their trainees, and their students. Many of these people can be reached with what we are currently doing — a blog, an email newsletter, a podcast, a videocast, books, online courses, social media, CME conferences, Financial Bootcamp email course, the WCI Forum, the r/whitecoatinvestors subreddit, and the White Coat Investor Facebook Group. However, some of them can only be reached face to face, one at a time.
You, my readers and listeners, have been promoting this material (I can't really say it is mine since most of it is just a rearrangement of material developed by others and blended with common sense) to your colleagues, trainees, and trainers for years. Sometimes it can happen a little more efficiently than one on one. For example, I go out and speak to groups of docs about a dozen times a year. It's not a very profitable use of my time, nor is the traveling particularly enjoyable, but I love to meet you individually and stay “in-touch” with the concerns of the “doc in the trenches.”
How To Teach Personal Finance to Doctors
However, I cannot even come close to keeping up with the demand for this sort of in-person financial education by myself. We were turning down an average of 2-3 speaking invitations a week, and that's without even trying to get them, although they've dried up a bit as of late for some reason. With this award, we are formally enlisting your aid in providing this education to your peers. We are going to make this as easy as possible for you. We get requests all the time to “share your slides” with people. For years I've told people “No. If my slides get out on the internet, nobody is going to hire me to come speak.” Well, it's gotten to the point where I don't care if anyone hires me to come speak or not. So I've put together some slide presentations for you to use when educating your peers and trainees. While it is only common courtesy (and always appreciated) to give me credit, I know that some people will not and I'm okay with that. These are canned (bottled?) lectures that many of you can give with little preparation. Seriously, I cannot make it any easier for you without getting on a plane.
Each presentation is designed to last 50 minutes, leaving ten minutes for Q&A. Don't be intimidated. I know you're not a professional financial advisor. After the first time, you'll realize 90% of the questions are ridiculously easy to answer. You'll be embarrassed for your profession when you realize the simplicity of most of the questions you get. Seriously, you've got this. And, if by chance, they come up with a real stumper, tell them you'll get back to them, shoot me the question by email, together we'll find the answer, and you can get back with the questioner within a couple of days and be their hero.
Just click on the links, download the file, read through the slides to make sure you're familiar with the material, look up anything you're not familiar with on the blog, or elsewhere, and you're good to go. One doctor financial lecture coming right up. You can give it to 2 people or 1000 people. You can send it out on email. You can post a link to it on your blog. You can modify the slides, but please do include the disclaimer slide unmodified in your presentation.
- Financial literacy
- Student loan management for attendings
- Financial advisors
- The five insurance policies you need and two you don't
- Basics of retirement accounts
- The benefits of index funds
- Basics of estate planning
- Basics of asset protection
- Financial literacy
- Student loan management for residents
- Disability insurance
- Term life insurance
- Know your retirement accounts
- A written financial plan
- Contract evaluation
- Financial literacy
- Living frugally
- School/residency choice
- Specialty choice
- Student loan management
- Owning vs renting during residency
- Financial steps as you leave medical school
I've updated each of these a bit for 2020.
Financial Educator of the Year Award
In addition to providing you the resources necessary to give a presentation to your trainees, I'm also going to provide an incentive to do so. Again this year, we are going to give out the Financial Educator of the Year Award. We will start taking submissions immediately. You have until May 15th to email nominations to us at [email protected]. By mid-June, I'll run a post on the blog announcing the winner and the person nominating them. So you get mentioned on the internet and you get a nice certificate. Oh yeah, and $1,000 cash money out of my pocket. As incentive to put together a nice submission, the nominator who writes the best nomination of the winner will get a free WCI online course of their choice.
Here are the criteria:
- You can't nominate yourself. (Sorry, get one of your colleagues or trainees to do it.)
- Include nominator's name, nominee's name, and a way to contact both of you.
- Nominator must email a 200-600 word explanation (email, .doc file, or link to Google Docs) of why nominee should win the award to [email protected] with the words “Educator Award Nomination” in the email title.
- Nominee must be a practicing attending-level physician or dentist.
- Nominee need not necessarily be an “academic” doctor.
- Nominee need not be an American, but you must speak and write reasonably competent English.
- Nominee cannot be a financial professional OR have a business that compensates you for teaching doctors about personal finance. No financial bloggers, financial podcasters, financial advisors, insurance agents, etc. Anybody can submit a nomination.
- The nominee must agree to be named and pictured on the blog. The nominator can nominate without permission, but the nominee must give permission to us before they can win. (The $1,000 and CV entry will hopefully be enough incentive.)
- The nominator's name and submission will be published with the name and a picture of the nominee and perhaps a few words of advice from the nominee to their fellow educators.
- The $1,000 award is tax-free. There will be only one winner.
- A nominee can only win once. Sorry Gaurava, you're done.
- Send email to [email protected]
The selection committee consists of the WCI Staff. Yes, we're completely biased in favor of those who are dedicated to teaching personal finance and investing to doctors without regard to specialty, gender, race, religion, nationality, skin color, or sexual orientation. In fact, don't even tell us about any of that stuff in your nomination because we don't care. We want to hear about what your nominee did to help doctors become financially literate. If you are nominated independently by multiple persons, that nomination will carry additional weight.
What do you think? Can you think of someone that should win this award? Should somebody nominate you? What's keeping you from teaching your peers and trainees basic personal finance and investing? What else can we do to help? Comment below!