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Self-made entrepreneur finds Cleary the right fit for her career goals

Cleary Alumnus Cathryn Porter is setting the world on fire with her remarkable achievements in a short span of time. Recently inducted into the prestigious Marquis Who’s Who biographical registry, the finance and accounting graduate is fast-tracking to own a financial planning business within 10 years.

This self-made woman didn’t have it easy. Coming from a “broken home,” she describes, she got in with a bad group of kids, dropped out of high school, moved out of her parents’ home at age 17, got herself into a lot of debt and had no success plan for her life. While working at a car dealership, she met her husband, and they were married 10 years ago.

Little by little, she began digging herself out of a deep hole and got a job managing an orthopedic practice. “I’ve always wanted to help people but at the end of the work day, I did not feel like I was accomplishing this,” she reports. When the pandemic hit, the practice began laying off employees and Porter decided to “take one for the team,” and voluntarily leave in hopes of saving someone else’s job.

“I was working full-time, raising two kids and not sure what I wanted to do next in my life,” she reflects. Around this time, her uncle, who owned a financial planning business, approached Porter and asked her to work with him.

“I wanted to help people with their medical needs and never once thought about working with numbers,” so she told her uncle a resounding “no,” but soon backtracked her decision, thinking she could help people in a different way. She could guide them with their investments and overall financial health, help them get on the right track financially, and advise them on how to build a financially stable future.

At age 30, Porter’s career took a drastic turn as she ventured into the financial planning and advising industry.

She knew she would need a degree, so she enrolled in classes at Cleary University.

“It was the right fit for me,” she notes. “It is local, I could work around my own schedule, the price was affordable, I could study at my own pace and I didn’t have to worry about getting to a class on a specific day and time. Cleary is a well-diversified school, I could take all of my business and accounting classes online, and I found the professors really care; they want you to be successful and they take the extra steps to help you achieve your goals.

“I haven’t found any school that offers as much as Cleary,” she adds.

“Anything’s possible,” Porter notes, and she is living proof. “I made an entire life change at the age of 30!”

Her advice to other students facing similar challenges is to “always stay motivated, and always look at the big picture. You can do it with determination, commitment and support. My family has been very supportive.”

Porter recently was inducted into the Marquis Who’s Who for her noteworthy accomplishments, visibility and prominence in her profession. Porter is a financial advisor and investment advisor for Bradford Financial Advisors affiliated with HBW Advisory Services, LLC in Brighton.

According to her Who’s Who profile, Porter “relies on her diligence, transparency and expertise” when helping clients. She takes a holistic approach to financial planning. She is dedicated to every client’s financial well-being and goes “above and beyond to educate clients about their options and financial house.”

Marquis Who’s Who® has chronicled the lives of the most accomplished individuals and innovators from every significant field of endeavor, including politics, business, medicine, law, education, art, religion and entertainment. Marquis celebrated its 125th anniversary this year.