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Hitting the books

PSCA offers online fiduciary training program

American Retirement Association’s Nevin E. Adams

Plan Sponsor Council of America, Chicago, is offering a new education program that will lead to a certificate attesting to candidates' understanding of their fiduciary duties as well as other elements of plan management.

"We're focusing on what sponsors need to do every day," said Nevin E. Adams, chief content officer for the American Retirement Association. The PSCA is a unit of the American Retirement Association.

"We met with sponsors and worked on this for a year," said Mr. Adams, one of the authors of the credential, called the certified plan sponsor professional.

The online training program includes information on fiduciary responsibilities, plan design, investment concepts, behavioral finance, plan audits, employee engagement, and vendor management and selection.

Candidates must pass a "rigorous credentialing exam," noted a news release describing the program. Candidates have 2.5 hours to complete the 100-question online exam.

For those who earn the credential, "we expect current employers and future employers to take this into account," Mr. Adams said. "It's something employers will look for — and look at — when putting someone in charge of retirement plans."

The course and exam are free. To be eligible for the certificate, "a candidate must have at least two years of experience in a plan sponsor role, pass the credential exam, and ascribe to the PSCA professional code of conduct," according to exam guidelines.

Additional information is available at pscalearn.org.

This effort is sponsored by Pacific Investment Management Co. LLC, Wilmington Trust Co., Ascensus LLC, OppenheimerFunds Inc. and Franklin Templeton (BEN) Investments (BEN).