IFA, University of Louisville Form Unique Partnership

U of L

Six-Week Virtual Program Will Lay Foundation for CFE Designation

The International Franchise Association (IFA) and University of Louisville are embarking on a unique partnership to provide continuing education and coveted certification for franchise industry professionals. The program, called Fundamentals of the Franchise Model, will include rigorous coursework as a steppingstone to achieving CFE certification. This educational initiative, a virtual six-week boot camp, is the offspring of the IFA’s Certified Franchise Executive (CFE) program and the Yum! Center for Global Franchise Excellence within the University of Louisville’s business school.

For almost 35 years the CFE program has combined franchise-oriented business, leadership and legal education to support careers within the industry. As the highest achievement in franchise education, the CFE program assists franchise executives, managers and local franchise owners in accelerating their personal growth as well as the growth of their entire organizations.

Fundamentals of the Franchise Model

Fundamentals of the Franchise Model will have an instructor-led curriculum that includes sessions on the foundations of the business model, business growth, franchisor-franchisee relationship, human resources, leadership and legalities. This initiative and the IFA FranGuard compliance course comprise the mandatory core components of the CFE program. Once aspiring franchise professionals supplement the CFE core components with elective courses and participation events, they can earn their CFE designation.

The Fundaments of the Franchise Model boot camp has respected entities backing it up. It will be offered under the auspices of the University of Louisville, a tier-one research school and a Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commissions on Colleges-accredited university. The university’s College of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. Praise from IFA, College and Yum! Executive.

“This landmark education and certification partnership will be transformational to the industry,” IFA President and CEO Matthew Haller stated in a news release. “Building on the success of the CFE program, this new partnership will encourage more people in franchising to level-up their skills by pursuing a CFE, ultimately creating a new level of professional excellence in franchising with standards-based education as the foundation.”

Furthering Franchise Education

Jeff Guan, interim dean of the University of Louisville’s College of Business, said the unique partnership “represents a wonderful opportunity in franchise education.” In the news release, Guan added that “our high educational standards and curriculum will improve the business qualifications of franchisees in the program and elevate the franchise industry as a whole.”

Wanda Williams, head of Global Franchising for Yum! Brands and an IFA board member, also applauded the new educational opportunity. “We are very proud of the work that has been done at the Yum! Center for Global Franchise Excellence since it opened,” she said in the news release. “Adding the IFA’s Certified Franchise Executive certification further enhances the reputation of these best-in-class educational programs.” You can apply to participate in this new program here.

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