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Center for Professional Development

Degree Programs

Human Resources Certification Preparation Programs

Accelerate Your Career in HR

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In partnership with HR Cert Prep Pros, University of Denver's Center for Professional Development offers the most comprehensive, engaging certification preparation programs for new and experienced human resources professionals. Our preparation programs and intensive workshops are designed to help you launch or advance your HR career without having to put it on hold. 

Courses to fit your schedule
With class sessions in the Denver Metro Area, from Loveland to Lone Tree, even the busiest professionals can take advantage of course offerings.   

Affordable pricing
HR Cert Prep courses are eligible for county workforce or AmeriCorps funding.  Email us for more info! Discounts are available for DU faculty, staff, alumni, and students, HRCPP alumni and current students, and active BAHRA members.  See course registration pages for more information and discount codes.

Upcoming Courses
We are no longer offerings this coursework in a virtual format. Please check back in Summer 2021 for information about in-person course offerings for Fall 2021. 

Course Descriptions

Associate Professional Human Resources Certification Preparation Program (aPHR) (CPD-0214)


HRCI's Associate Professional in Human Resources (aPHR) is the perfect certification to help fast-track your career growth and provide you with the confidence to launch into the HR profession. The aPHR certification is the first-ever HR certification designed for professionals who are just beginning their HR career or seeking to enter the HR field. Jumpstart your knowledge and confidence and become proficient in HR operations, employment law, recruitment, compensation, benefits, HR development, employee and labor relations, and safety, health and security.

This course is an intensive review of the essentials of human resource management and serves as thorough preparation for those pursuing their aPHR certification as well as a standalone course for non-HR professionals. The course incorporates study tips, test-taking strategies, practice questions, in-class exercises and discussions, and exam-specific final assessments developed exclusively by HR Cert Prep Pros to supplement your HRCP study materials.

This course is ideal for students who are:

  • New to HR
  • Early in their career and beginning to take on operational vs administrative responsibilities
  • Seeking to learn the fundamentals of HR in order to be a more effective supervisor or manager
  • Responsible for the oversight of an organization's HR function

21 Hours

Professional Human Resources Certification Preparation Program (PHR/SPHR/SHRM-CP/SCP) (CPD-0215)

phr sphr

HRCI's Professional in Human Resources (PHR) certification is an ideal way to establish your operational HR knowledge and expertise. HRCI's Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification solidifies your credibility as an HR leader. The PHR and SPHR certifications are for HR professionals with experience planning and implementing HR programs and policies. We help you prepare and pass either exam based on your current level of HR experience.

In this course, we incorporate study tips, test-taking strategies, practice questions, in-class exercises, discussions, and exam-specific final assessments developed exclusively by HR Cert Prep Pros to supplement your HRCP study materials.

42 Hours



Please review the eligibility requirements for each HRCI certification to ensure you are registering for the course that is the best fit for your expertise, experience, and career aspirations. If you have any questions as to which exam may be best for you, please reach out to Debi Chernak, CEO of HR Cert Prep Pros, at 303-670-3366 or for assistance.

Certificate of Completion

Students who successfully meet course requirements will receive a certificate of completion from University of Denver. 

additional materials required

Students are required purchase a Prep for Success Package from HR Cert Prep Pros. Additional information about these packages and how to purchase then is included on individual course registration pages and will also be sent to students after registration.


Debi Chernak, SPHR, SPHRi, SHRM-SCP, M.Ed

Debi is is President and CEO of HR Cert Prep Pros, Inc. and HR Cert Prep Pros Consulting Group. Prior to founding HRCPP, the served as a senior HR executive and consultant for start-up and growth companies.

Debi excels at building and transforming cultures to become strategically aligned, engaged, high-performing, and driven to succeed. Her practice includes organizational design and development, culture and values, corporate and employment branding, strategic and workforce planning, recruiting, motivating, and retaining top talent, coaching, employee relations and engagement, performance, learning and development, compensation, benefits and equity programs, HR systems and implementation, employment law, M and A, and HR due diligence.

In 2017, Debi founded HR Cert Prep Pros to bring her passion for teaching, certification, coaching, and mentoring to a broader audience of aspiring HR professionals. More than 1,700 HR colleagues since 2004 have attended her HR certification prep courses at the University of Denver (DU), Colorado State University (CSU), and Regis University, and achieved consistent pass rates of 80-100%.

In addition to her role as CEO of HR Cert Prep Pros, Debi is an Adjunct Faculty member for DU's Strategic HR Master's Degree program, serves on the Board of Directors for the Boulder Area HR Association (BAHRA), and is an active member of Mile High SHRM, the Northern CO HR Association (NCHRA), and the CSU Alumni Association. She graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management - Marketing and Organizational Behavior from Loyola University in Maryland and a Master of Education in Organizational Performance and Change from CSU. Debi earned her PHR in 1997; SPHR in 2001; aPHR, SPHRi, SHRM-CP, and SHRM-SCP in 2018.

Carin Owen, SPHR, MS

Carin is Vice President of Organizational Development and an HRCPP Certified Professional Instructor for HR Cert Prep Pros Consulting Group. A strategically focused Human Resources Leader with more than 20 years of expertise, Carin has achieved broad-based success in client relations, employee engagement, change acceleration, culture transformation, as well as leadership coaching and development. As a strategic partner and trusted advisor, Carin is passionate about engaging with human resource and business leaders to identify and execute individual goals and key organizational deliverables.

During her professional career, Carin has served as a Senior HR Leader, in roles ranging from Division Manager to Director of Human Resources, for Fortune 500 companies in the cable, wireless, healthcare, and retail industries.

Carin earned her Master's degree in Management from Regis University in Colorado and her undergraduate business degree from Elon College in North Carolina. She also holds an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) certificate from the University of Denver, a Certified Change Practitioner designation through PROSCI, and a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification through HRCI.

Dee Anna Grismore, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, ODCP

Dee Anna is an HR Cert Prep Pros Certified Professional Instructor, Founder and Principal of Higher Results LLC, and Director of Human Resources for the K.P. Kauffman Company. In her previous position as Sr. Human Resources Director for The Denver Post and sister company Prairie Mountain Media, Dee Anna provided human resources support for 15+ media outlets around Colorado. As a strategic HR business partner, she focused on effectively executing human resource strategy by implementing best practices in employee relations, training and development, compliance, and human capital management. Dee Anna's industry experience includes computer software and hardware, financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, construction, mass media, petroleum, retail, and automotive.

Dee Anna has held several Board of Director positions including District Director for the Denver and Colorado Springs areas for CO SHRM and Special Events Director and Vice President for CHRA (now Mile High SHRM). She holds an Associate's Degree in Management - Human Resources and graduated with honors with a Bachelor's Degree in Business - Finance. Dee Anna is an Organizational Development Certified Professional (ODCP) and became SPHR certified in 2008 and SHRM-SCP certified in 2015.

Register Today to Accelerate your HR Career:

Please check back in Summer 2021 for information about in-person offerings in Fall 2021. 


Looking for a graduate certificate or master's degree in Strategic Human Resources? Learn more

*The HR Certification Institute® (HRCI®) does not endorse any particular preparation program or offering. We encourage prospective certification holders to use a variety of resources that reflect their learning styles and needs. Purchasing a certification product is NOT required and HRCI does not guarantee that an individual will pass based on the purchase of a certification preparation product.

The red-and-purple HR design, HR CERTIFICATION INSTITUTE, aPHR, PHR, and SPHR are trademarks of registered trademarks of Human Resource Certification Institute, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. Used Under License.

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  • Center for Professional Development
    2211 S. Josephine Street, #302
    Denver, CO 80208
  • Phone: 303-871-4161
  • Email:

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