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ARLINGTON, Va.-Some in credit union land have been out of school for a while and others are just getting a taste of freedom from tests, but NAFCU is hoping that will not deter them from entering University NAFCU. NAFCU is working to reach out-virtually that is-to employees of its members that do not typically attend seminars and conferences, like the tellers. The university (http://www.nafcu.org/University) was launched with four learning modules-including anti-money laundering, security essentials, basic teller training, and regulator compliance for tellers-with more to come. “One of the biggest reasons NAFCU decided to start offering online learning courses was to meet the education and training needs of small credit unions that typically do not have the resources, budget or personnel to participate in traditional face-to-face conferences and seminars,” NAFCU Assistant Director of Education Ron Goode said. In addition, he explained, the `blended learning’ technique, which includes various methods of learning like Internet based courses and audiotapes, allows for a better chance of success because it taps into different learning styles. Goode said that studies have not shown a significant difference in comprehension testing between distance learning and face-to-face training. Additionally, students will be able to attend class whenever they feel like it. NAFCU Director of Education Sara Romanick pointed out, “The staff of credit unions are looking for convenience. They are looking for training that is convenient for them.” Also as young people are entering the workforce, they have grown up with this type of technology and are accustomed to it, she said. The turn around time is also a benefit, Goode indicated. He said that while NAFCU could put together new information and insert it into this Internet Based Training in a matter of days, the same does not hold true for in-person conferences. Another benefit to NAFCU and its member credit unions is cost-savings. Though NAFCU can disseminate information quickly now through University NAFCU, the project has been a long time in the making. About two years, according to NAFCU Director of Compliance Linda Dent. NAFCU’s attorneys have their fingerprints all over it, she said. In addition to authoring some of the content, they also went over content submitted by others with a fine-tooth comb to ensure appropriateness. Dent said NAFCU had been working out an agreement with Sheshunoff to put it together since June of last year, but overall University NAFCU was about two years in the making. And, looking over the lawyers’ shoulders were NAFCU’s technology and education committees to ensure the organization was producing truly useful materials for its membership. Eventually, NAFCU plans to include archived audioconferences, Webcasts, and annual conference proceedings on the Web site. [email protected]

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