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Clark sets out to SMARTEN UP financial industry: SUI

VANCOUVER, June 28 2010 - "The name sure captures attention," says Smarten Up Institute founder and CEO Laurie Clark, "and that was our intention, right from the start."

Clark, a 20 year veteran and advocate of the finance and investment industry, opens the doors to Smarten Up Institute, headquartered in Vancouver, on June 30. "SUI is being launched in response to multiple requests from industry leaders in Operations and IT centers expressing their frustration over the loss of basic, yet fundamental core concepts. We need to smarten up as an industry, and SUI is ready to build on the skills needed now."

SUI is the first institution where finance and industry support and IT personnel can gain direct working knowledge of key aspects of the Canadian markets. It is designed, said Clark, with the longer term goal of developing collaborative and flexible future leaders who are well-rounded in their understanding of risk and opportunity, and who will also be equipped to manage the industry through its evolution and upheavals.

"Smarten Up is a welcome addition to the financial and investment education landscape," adds Debra Hewson, President and CEO of Odlum Brown, "Industry-specific expertise and the transfer of that expertise is a critical component of success in our business. The programs developed by the Smarten Up Institute will help to cultivate employees' skills and provide practical tools to enhance their overall expertise."

SUI courses will be available on-line and in classroom settings in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal, with options for on-site instruction. Among Smarten Up Institute's initial course offerings are: Securities Operations; Compliance; Global Securities Custody, Trading and Settlements; Mutual Fund Regulation and Governance; and Project Management and Finance. Clark is introducing an intensive one-year mentoring program, Smart Mentor(R), for qualified management candidates, as well as the Smart Talk(R) live chat series which will provide financial industry personnel with access to leading industry experts and controversial topics in a live interactive web-streaming video format.

Investment Industry Association of Canada CEO Ian Russell welcomes the new Institute, and says "This unique educational offering will encourage the sharing of professional knowledge and expertise and will benefit Industry Association members by providing a more compliant, engaged and committed industry professional."

About SUI

The Smarten Up Institute is Canada's financial industry’s premier mentor, leadership and management education center. SUI provides practical, hands on courses that are not offered by any other institution to Operations, Back Office and IT professionals wishing to keep themselves and their skills current. www.smartenupinstitute.com



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