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Academic and career development division seeks CPAs for the future.

"By far, the most important thing the academic and career development division does for AICPA members is recruiting--convincing young people to become CPAs," said Rick Elam, AICPA vice-president - education, in a recent Journal interview.

The AICPA's recruiting efforts are aimed at attracting bright students rather than large numbers of students; the number of accounting graduates should satisfy the profession's needs for the foreseeable future. With a sufficient supply of graduates in store, the profession therefore can concentrate on attracting the most talented students available.

How the 150-hour requirement helps

The 150-hour requirement for new CPAs, which now has been enacted by 24 states, with the possibility of legislation being passed by up to 10 more states by mid-1993, should help the profession attract brighter, better-trained accounting graduates.

In Florida, where the 150-hour requirement has been in effect for almost 10 years, universities are graduating as many accounting students as the system will allow. The number of new CPAs has remained level for the 10-year period even though the number of people taking the Uniform CPA Examination has gone down sharply. That's simply because more, better-educated people are passing it than before the 150-hour requirement.

AICPA scholarship programs

The AICPA scholarship programs are a means of attracting and retaining quality students and educators to accounting.

* The AICPA Doctoral Fellowship Program. This program awards grants of $5,000 per year for up to three years to working CPAs who wish to obtain a PhD and teach accounting at the college level. From 15 to 25 new fellowships are awarded each year, and an average of 40 students receive grants in any one school year.

* The AICPA Scholarships for Minority Accounting Students Program. This scholarship program awards up to $3,000 to each outstanding minority accounting student recipient. This year, close to 300 persons received scholarship awards.

* The Minority Doctoral Fellowship Program. This fellowship program grants $8,500 per year to outstanding minority accounting faculty members who wish to work toward a PhD.

Helping CPAs in education

The academic and career development division also has a number of programs to assist CPA educators.

* Annual case-writing competition. This contest links practitioners with CPA educators to write up real-life cases that can be used in the classroom to demonstrate proper application of accounting and auditing techniques. The best cases are presented at an annual workshop for educators.

* The Outstanding Accounting Educator Award. This award is presented each year by the AICPA to an educator who has made outstanding contributions to accounting education through excellence in teaching and commitment to the development of quality accounting education programs. (See JofA, "AICPA Names Needles Outstanding Accounting Educator," Aug. 92, page 95.)

* Accounting Educators FYI. This newsletter is bound into the CPA Letter five times a year.

* Traveling Workshop for Educators. This workshop, which concentrates on the 150-hour requirement, is a cooperative program with state CPA societies. Educators from schools with 150-hour accounting curriculums share their experiences with educators looking for ways to implement the 150-hour requirement.

An improvement in quality

Elam's view of the quality of today's accounting graduates is as high as or higher than it has ever been. "That doesn't mean it won't get better. As the 150-hour requirement takes effect, many students at prestigious schools that don't offer undergraduate accounting degrees may be attracted to accounting at the graduate level."
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Title Annotation:AICPA
Publication:Journal of Accountancy
Date:Oct 1, 1992
Previous Article:Is accounting becoming the first truly international profession?
Next Article:Lawyers in CPAs' clothing.

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