* AICPA WINS AWARD FOR FINANCIAL LITERACY EFFORTS: The American Institute of CPAs has received a 2005 Summit Award from the American Society of Association Executives for its national 360 Degrees of Financial Literacy program.

The AICPA program was selected from more than 200 contestants, and is one of six organizations to win a Summit Award this year. The award is the society's highest honor for associations that implement innovative community-based programs. The winners, chosen by the association's Advance America Committee, are recognized for their efforts involving public education and information, business and social innovation, citizenship and democracy enhancement, and civic and community volunteerism.

"We share this great honor with the thousands of CPAs who, either on their own or through the outstanding programs of the state CPA societies, have generously volunteered their time and talents to help Americans understand their personal finances," said AICPA president and chief executive Barry Melancon, in a statement.

Carl George, chairman of the National CPA Financial Literacy Commission, said that the financial literacy program has reached more than 145 million people. Launched in May 2004, the centerpiece of the campaign is a consumer Web site, www.360financialliteracy.org, that contains hundreds of articles, tools and frequently asked questions on a number of financial topics.

The AICPA will receive its award at the sixth annual Summit Awards Dinner on Sept. 27 in Washington, D.C.

* COLLEGE FOR FINANCIAL PLANNING ROLLS OUT ONLINE CERTIFICATION: The College for Financial Planning has begun offering its proprietary CFP Program via the Centra online learning platform.

The online courses enable companies to offer identical classes to employees across the country. Instructors can share applications and conduct tests online to track student progress. Sessions are recorded, allowing students who miss a class to catch up and an opportunity for review of class work.

* PAYCHEX RANKED AMONG TOP 401(K) RECORDKEEPERS: Rochester, N.Y.-based payroll and benefits provider Paychex Inc. has been ranked among the top 401(k) recordkeepers in the United States, according to a national survey.

The seventh annual survey, conducted by PlanSponsor magazine - a publication covering the pension and retirement industry - ranked 79 defined-contribution recordkeepers by total assets reported under administration, and ranked the top 10 recordkeepers in America in five categories. Paychex was first among companies surveyed by number of recordkeeping plans gained in 2004, with an increase of 8,167 new plans.

Paychex ranked fourth in the number of defined-contribution recordkeeping plans.

* AMERICAN COLLEGE ROLLS OUT NEW COURSE OFFERING: Financial services educator The American College has unveiled a new course as part of its Financial Services Specialist designation.

The course, FA 262: Foundations of Financial Planning: An Overview, is one of three required courses for the new FSS program. FA 262 is the first of two new courses created specifically for the FSS designation. The other course, FA 263: Foundations of Financial Planning: The Process, is scheduled for an October release. FA 262 provides an overview of the major components that make up a comprehensive financial plan, including the six-step planning process, insurance planning, risk management and estate planning.

Courses in the FSS program are being offered in a classroom setting in conjunction with the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors through its local associations nationwide. For more information on the designation, contact The American College at www.theamericancollege.edu or the NAIFA at www.naifa.org.

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