The National Retail Federation Foundation starts NRF University

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The NRF Foundation, the research and education division of the National Retail Federation, has created NRF University wired to offer online curriculum to more than 20 million retail employees across the country.

The nonprofit has teamed up with three major partners to complete the initiative.

It has selected GeoLearning Inc., a managed learning service, as technology provider of the long-distance learning platform. The service will deliver, manage and track training for NRF University wired.

The national launch of the program is supported by job Web site, Careerbuilder.com. The learning system will be powered by Sun Microsystems Sun Fire servers.

NRF University wired simplifies learning by providing a curriculum of training courses available to both NRF members and non-members through a scalable, customized online distance learning system.

Delivered completely over the Internet, learners can access the system regardless of their location, and retailers can consistently train employees regardless of geography.

NRF also will offer compliance-related courseware for retailers, who in turn can purchase their own e-learning system from the NRF Foundation directly.

The Internet-hosted GeoMaestro Learning Management System allows organizations to capture, create, manage and share knowledge to improve workforce productivity, accelerate critical business processes and drive organizational performance.

The system also will offer peer-reviewed content from multiple providers and original courses developed by the NRF Foundation and selected partners.

Careerbuilder.com has committed to financial and marketing support for the full three-year launch in order to ensure that all retailers are aware of the education that is available.

The NRF Foundation previously partnered with the U.S. Department of Labor last summer to offer more advanced online retail courses through the Retail Leadership initiative. Other partners of that initiative included Saks Inc., The Home Depot, Toys "R" Us, and CVS/pharmacy.

The nonprofit conducts industry research, develops education and workforce development programs, and promotes retailing as a career destination. Additional information is available at www.nrf.com.

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