About SCMS

The Southwest CUNA Management School (SCMS) is a three-year course that provides innovative, intense, hands-on, professional development in the credit union movement, including:

  • A focus on enhancing credit union leadership skills, broadening business acumen, promoting executive development, sharpening presentation skills, building a solid professional network, and cultivating the next generation of leaders.
  • Limiting the first-year class to 60 students.
  • Providing one of the most challenging and engaging curriculums for credit union professionals built on proven techniques and new trends.
  • A strategic mix of academic faculty, credit union industry leaders, and recognized professional consultants.

Students develop a real-world strategic business plan for their own credit unions.


To be the preferred source of credit union executive development.


Educate, develop, and enhance the leadership potential and skills of credit union executives.


Providing quality education and development for credit union leaders, present and future.

School Focus

  • Advocacy
  • Financial Management
  • Innovation
  • Leadership
  • Strategic planning/thinking


  • Year two: Complete first-year classes and student project sections, as assigned.
  • Year three: Complete first- and second-year classes, as well as student project approval.

Shaping Leaders

SCMS alumni hold leadership positions at their credit unions, in their local chapters, and with community-based organizations. They also serve as league directors and more, throughout the credit union movement.

Alumni by Job Level

Alumni by Job Level

Stands the Test of Time

  • In 2004, SCMS celebrated its first alumnus opting to complete the school for a second time to refresh her skills—20 years after completing the school the first time. Sandy Smith, CEO of Texas FCU, earned the respect of her classmates and peers, representing her class as its president and graduating with honors.
  • SCMS has celebrated numerous second-generation graduates, as well as a third-generation professional who graduated in 2017.
  • The first class was held in 1966 as a six-year program at the University of Houston.

Broadens Perspectives—1997 Marked Two Firsts

  • Dennis Longbotham with Advancial FCU, was the first credit union board member to go through SCMS, graduating with honors. Longbotham also led his class as its president.
  • Terry Slagle with the Oklahoma State Banking Department was the first regulator to complete the SCMS program.
TCU Neeley School of Business

Thank You 2020 Sponsors

Academic Fellow

CUNA Mutual GroupCornerstone Resources

Academic Patron

Catalyst Corporate FCUCornerstone League

Educational Sponsor

Cornerstone Foundation

Friends of SCMS

American Airlines FCU
Arkansas FCU
Blalack & Williams, PC
Bossier FCU
Callahan & Associates, Inc.
Cornerstone Advisors
Credit Union of America
CU Direct

CU Strategic Planning
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
InTouch CU
JRF Consulting Services, LLC
Las Colinas FCU
Neighbors FCU

Sievewright & Associates
South Carolina FCU
Tarrant County's CU
The BA Group
Tinker FCU
Vantage West CU