CUaware Protégé FAQ

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Got questions about the CUaware Protégé Competition? We've got answers. Please review this list of frequently asked questions (FAQ) for assistance. We will continue to improve this list as needed.


1. What is the CUaware Protégé Competition?

The CUaware Protégé Competition is an opportunity for credit unions and chapters to: recognize the value and potential in rising professionals age 35 and under; enhance chapter programming and credit union interest; reinforce cooperative principles and credit union philosophy; and support CUaware and the league’s investment in developing leadership.

2. What are the criteria to be eligible?

Eligible candidates must be from a League-affiliated credit union, and at least 18 years of age and no more than 35 years of age by January 30, 2019 prior to the finals. All finalists must also be available to compete at the finals January 31 - February 1, 2019.

3. Is there a cost to apply or participate?

There is no personal cost to apply or participate in this competition. If you win the chapter-level contest, your chapter and credit union will work together to cover the expenses for your conference registration, hotel accommodations, gas reimbursement, and meals not included in the hotel rate.

4. What is the deadline to apply?

Contact your chapter representatives for the specific date for your competition. All participating chapters must have a winner determined by Friday, January 4, 2019.

5. Is my chapter hosting a competition?

To date, the following chapters have signed on to participate. In NC: Northwest, North Piedmont, Piedmont, and Tarheel chapters; and in SC: Columbia, Lowcountry, and Upstate chapters. As they become available, chapter-level competition dates will be posted on our event calendar here.

6. Can my credit union send more than one candidate?

No. Your credit union may only send one candidate to compete in the competition. If you have more than one credit union employee interested in competing, we encourage you to host an internal competition to select your candidate to move forward to the chapter-level contest.

7. What are the stages of competition?

The CUaware Protégé Competition is based on a three-tiered structure. Each credit union determines one (1) candidate to send to the chapter-level competition, where he or she will submit an application which includes a one-page essay submission, and give a five-minute presentation (PowerPoint optional) on a category from a League-provided list.

Once chapter-level representatives are determined, those winners will go on to compete in the finals at the League's conference January 31 - February 1, 2019. At the finals, contestants will complete a brief, multiple-choice proctored exam and present their oral presentation to conference attendees.

8. How is the competition judged?

Judging at the chapter and finals levels will be based on the same criteria: Credit Union Knowledge - 25%; Ability to Communicate - 45%; Personality - 20%; and Professional Appearance - 10%.

9. Where are the finals being held?

The finals are scheduled to be held at the League's conference January 31 - February 1, 2019 at the Renaissance Charlotte Suites Hotel in Charlotte, NC. Finalists are required to be in attendance for the two-day conference.

10. What are the prizes and awards?

All participants in the CUaware Protégé Competition gain enhanced credit union knowledge, positive reinforcement of their value to the movement, and networking via the process and membership in the CUaware peer group.

At the Chapter Level:

  • Each chapter works with the finalist’s sponsor credit union to support his/her participation in the CUaware Protégé finals, including two-nights lodging, mileage and some expenses (or a stipend). Estimated total value is $500-600 (estimation includes the cost of registration, hotel for two nights, meals, and gas reimbursement).
  • Chapter winners will also have the opportunity to sign up for the CUaware Protégé Mentor Program, which pairs a protégé with a volunteer credit union executive for valuable cross-cultural impact and career development. Click here for more details.

At the Finals Level:

  • The winner of the finals competition will have a position on the CUaware Council. Additional opportunities for outreach will be coordinated by CUaware.
  • Immediate benefit to the 2019 CUaware Protégé and the two runners-up is a selection of one of four developmental scholarships below.

    • Southeast CUNA Management School – One – year registration, valued at more than $1,600 (requires commitment to three-year program)
    • CCUL Hike the Hill (Washington, DC) – Full participation including airfare and lodging, valued at $1,100
    • Principles & Philosophy Conference + Webinar Voucher – Includes conference tuition, two nights lodging, meals, and a $600 webinar voucher (total value around $1,300).

11. How long is the CUaware Protégé’s term?

The CUaware Protégé will hold the title for one year from the date the winner is determined.

Please direct additional questions to any of the following CCUL and CUaware representatives:

Courtney Jackson, CCUL

Jeff Hardin, CCUL

Brandon McAdams, CUaware

Contact Us


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Columbia, SC 29202

800-822-8859 Phone
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