From a recent exchange with a reader, who resides in a decently-sized metro area of just under 700,000 population:
Q: I am a student studying business and I am really interested in a career in finance, particularly as a financial advisor. I have no crazy ambition of going to Wall Street or anything but I would like to get some sort of advice as to some of the important steps one would take in becoming a financial advisor.
A: Hopefully, the career placement office at your B-school should be able to give you some leads. Specifically, seek out alumni in the field whom you can contact and have a chat with, to learn about how they got where they are.
Also look up the brokerage firms in your area that might interest you, and contact the office managers of those local branches. See if they, or FAs in their offices, would be willing to talk to you about how to get in the business, training programs, etc. Better yet, ask if they are looking for new hires in the field, and see what you need to do to get considered.