iccfa university

As a result of the cancellation of the ICCFA University, scheduled for July 17–22, 2020, the ICCFA is developing a free webinar program with the deans of each of the colleges at ICCFAU. Free and open to everyone to attend, we hope that these digital offerings will keep you informed and make you even more excited to join us for ICCFA University 2021.

Save the Date
July 23–28, 2021

This five-day program is designed to offer intensive instruction and networking opportunities in a college-campus setting. You can attend for just one or two years, or you may go on to complete four years and become an “ICCFAU graduate.”

After much deliberation, the ICCFA has come to the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 ICCFA University, set for July 17 to 22 at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. The decision to cancel comes as a result of currently ongoing public health and safety concerns surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Each year, students at ICCFA University are treated to a fantastic experience. Not just in the classroom, where they are given the opportunity to learn from experts across the deathcare profession, but also through our networking and social events. We’ve had many attendees tell us that the friends and connections they’ve made at ICCFA University have stuck with them for life. Following both required and recommended guidelines, we would not be able to safely provide our students the experience they’ve come to expect. With input from the ICCFA leadership, staff, ICCFA University Deans, public health experts, and our membership, we have decided to cancel the 2020 ICCFA University Program.

As a result of this cancellation, the ICCFA is developing a free webinar program with the deans of each of the colleges at ICCFAU. Free and open to everyone to attend, we hope that these digital offerings will keep you informed and make you even more excited to join us for ICCFA University 2021. More information on these webinars will be posted on iccfa.com as it becomes available.

All paid registrants will be issued a full refund on their registration fees. If you were awarded a scholarship to attend this year’s ICCFA University, your scholarship will be carried over and applied to the 2021 ICCFA University. Scholarship winners will be contacted directly with more information on this process.

The Emory Conference Center Hotel, the ICCFAU host hotel, is aware of this cancellation, and is in the process of canceling all reservations made within the ICCFA room block. If you have questions about your specific reservation, please reach out to the hotel at 404-712-6000. As for travel reservations, please contact your transportation provider directly.

We are certainly disappointed that we can’t bring everyone together at Emory University this year but be sure to mark your calendar for July 23–28, 2021, when we will return to the Emory campus to enjoy their southern hospitality and the full ICCFAU experience!

What is ICCFA U?

ICCFA University is held for five days each July. Undergraduate students enroll in one of the University’s eight colleges and spend the entire five days learning about that area of the profession. Students who complete four colleges become ICCFAU graduates (the CEO program does not count towards graduation), but attending four years is not required for enrollment. Some students enroll for one or two years, attending just those colleges that are most relevant to their jobs. But many students do choose to go on to study for four years or more as a way of broadening the scope of their knowledge.

Who can attend?

ICCFA University is open to employees of all cemeteries, funeral homes, crematories and related businesses. Prior college attendance is not required. In general, it is designed for students who are:

  • Company owners and chief executive officers.
  • Managers seeking to develop additional skills and knowledge in order to improve their techniques and operations.
  • Managers who are interested in moving into new areas of responsibility.
  • Managers new to the cemetery and funeral service profession.
  • Staff interested in advancing into management positions.
  • Staff interested in improving their skills to better serve their employers and their client families.
  • Suppliers who want to network and gain a better understanding of their customers’ challenges.

What is the Masters Program?

The Master’s Program allows ICCFAU graduates to return to the University and take personally selected courses from each of the colleges. Because the college curricula are continually refined to reflect changes in the profession, there are always updated courses and new information available for continued professional development. Students registering for the Master’s Program must include a daily itinerary of their selected classes along with their registration.

What is the CEO Program?

Available to chief executives and company owners, the CEO Program allows top-level professionals to attend ICCFAU and take personally selected courses from each of the colleges. Students registering for this program are required to include a daily itinerary of their selected classes along with their registration. The CEO program does not count towards graduation.

Are Continuing Education credits available through ICCFAU?

Yes. Funeral directors can earn up to 25 CE credits, pending individual state approval. Please note that due to onerous and/or expensive filing requirements, the ICCFA no longer applies for continuing education credits in Pennsylvania or Virginia. ICCFA members applying for the Certified Cemetery Executive, Certified Funeral Executive, Certified Cemetery Funeral Executive, Certified Cremation Executive and/or Certified Supplier Executive designations through the association’s certification program will earn a total of 80 points toward certification upon completion of each college.


The ICCFA Educational Foundation, along with associations around the country, offer scholarships to those wishing to attend the ICCFA University.

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What Past Students Have to Say

“ICCFA University is by far the most transformational experience you can have within the death care profession. By attending, you will gain a network of friends and knowledge from the best of the best. You arrive in Memphis as an individual, but will leave it as a member of the ICCFA University family.”

— Chris D. Cooke, Superintendent of Cemeteries, City of Evansville, IN; 2013 ICCFA University Valedictorian

“Being a part of the ICCFA University has been inspiring to a degree that no other program for our industry comes close to. It is that inspiration that drives me to send as many people from our organization each year as possible—so they can inherit the same inspiration that I have felt from year to year—and use it to make our organization better, as well as our industry as a whole.”

— Lauren Blevins, COO, Williams Funeral Homes & Crematory, Columbia, TN; 2012 ICCFA University Graduate and CEO program attendee

“A top notch program. The latest stats, trends and info in our industry. Education is always the best available. The people deliver sincere caring and sharing. I hope to keep coming back for many years to come.”

— Caren Harville, CCE, CFuE; CEO, Glen Haven & Sholom Memorial Parks & Mortuaries, Sylmar, CA; 2013 ICCFA University Graduate

“Every year that I attend I am amazed how much I learn, how much information and tools were shared openly, and how much I am inspired to reach beyond and improve my company. The networking and resources available are outstanding at ICCFA University. ICCFA University’s deans and speakers are the best. It would take me years to accumulate the collective knowledge I have gained here at the university. Thank you!”

— Alesia Skinner, Paxtang Cemetery Association, Harrisburg, PA

“The overall experience was enlightening and very informative. The networking is great. All classes are interactive and all questions are encouraged and answered. It really is a career builder with useful information you can bring back to your workplace and implement immediately. Very highly recommended.”

— Kevin Ronayne, Catholic Cemeteries, Diocese of Brooklyn/St. Charles Cemetery, Middle Village, NY

“The connections I have made and the insight I have gained at ICCFAU are extremely valuable and eye-opening. I was very fortunate in being able to attend and I absolutely plan on coming back next year. It’s worth it! Thank you for giving us this opportunity to see what’s out there, what mind-states our industry is in and all it can be in the future. I still maintain that every funeral home in America can be a contemporary funeral home, regardless of price. I learned more about the service part of the funeral service industry in one week than I have in two years interning.”

— Heather T. Mitchell, Cascade Memorial, Bellevue, WA

“I truly believe this university should be a requirement by any company in this industry. I have been in this business for over a decade, and this was my first year attending. Like others, I find we can become complacent and stagnant in our thinking. Not only did we learn new and exciting things from our industry leaders, but I found myself saying, “Oh yeah, we used to do that. That does work. Why did we stop?” I strongly recommend the university to both “old dogs” as well as new people in our business.”

— Jeff Sultemeier, Lakeland Hills Memorial Park, Burnet, TX

“As a supplier, I can’t begin to tell you what this meant to me. I’ve been in this business 35 years, and I have never experienced anything like this before. I was convinced I knew everything there was to know about this business. Time to step back and pay just a little more attention to what my customers really need and experience on a day-to-day basis. Simply priceless!”

— Brett Coates, Biondan North America, Toronto, Ontario