Madeline Patterson-Baleno recently became a CFE after attending the CFE Exam Review Course in New York. When she’s not working, Madeline enjoys spending time with her family. This past April, however, she put some time aside to accomplish her goal of obtaining the CFE credential. Madeline believes that both the credential itself and the knowledge she gained while studying for her CFE will benefit her professionally by showing her colleagues and peers that she is competent in fraud matters.
Coach: When did you receive your CFE credential?
Patterson-Baleno: I was certified April 28, 2016
Coach: You attended the CFE Exam Review Course in New York and following the course you sat for the CFE Exam on-site. Please describe your experience of participating in the 4-day course and then sitting for the exam immediately after.
Patterson-Baleno: It felt like fraud boot camp, but that is what I liked about it! I studied with the CFE Exam Prep Course, but I felt like the in-class experience helped me retain the information better because the material was presented in a different way. Sitting for the exam immediately after attending class was helpful. The information was fresh in my mind, and getting my results right away was a huge confidence booster.
Coach: What did you like most about the CFE Exam Review Course?
Patterson-Baleno: I really appreciated getting the exam results right away. It was very reassuring to move forward to the next part of the exam knowing that I did not have to worry about the previous section and that my time studying had paid off. I also enjoyed meeting people who all had the same goal as I did, regardless of their background or experience. I returned with a fresh perspective on my career.
Coach: In what ways do you feel that your new CFE credential will be beneficial to you in your current profession?
Patterson-Baleno: I feel that having the CFE credential is beneficial because it shows colleagues and peers that I have a competency in the area of fraud. Maintaining a credential shows that an effort is being made to stay current with fraud trends, which is very important.
Coach: How did you prepare yourself to sit for the exam on-site? Did you spend any additional time studying after class each day?
Patterson-Baleno: I studied with the Prep Course almost every day, in short blocks of time. It was important for me to have the information in my long-term memory and feel confident going to the review course. I spent so much time studying before the review course that I did not study after class. Instead, I used that time to make sure that I got enough rest so I could fully concentrate the next day.
Coach: Would you recommend this course to your colleagues?
Patterson-Baleno: I have already recommended this course to colleagues.
Coach: How did you become passionate about fighting fraud?
Patterson-Baleno: In 2011, management moved me out of a call center position into a newly created fraud position. It was the best thing that ever happened to me.
Coach: Now that we know what you do professionally, what do you like to do for fun and what do you find enjoyable about it?
Patterson-Baleno: In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my husband and family.
Coach: Do you have any study tips or suggestions for aspiring CFEs?
Patterson-Baleno: Take full advantage of the CFE Exam Prep Course and CFE Exam Review Course. The amount of questions in the Prep Course is intimidating at first, but the questions go by fast because the content is so interesting. I was actually a little disappointed when I finished!