ACU's Master of Accountancy program in Top 25
Abilene Christian University's graduate accounting program was recently ranked in the Top 25 in the nation for small schools by Public Accounting Report, and that comes as no surprise to alumni who graduated from the program.
"Our curriculum/faculty is extremely effective in preparing us for the workforce," says Kyle McVey, who earned his Master of Accountancy from ACU in 2009. "As a recent graduate, working for a Big 4 firm and competing against graduates from Tier 1 schools, I have found that my education at ACU has given me the technical training to not only compete but also thrive under the pressures present in such a demanding, high-paced environment."
Kyle currently works in Jacksonville, Fla., for KPMG L.L.P., a global network of professional firms providing audit, tax and advisory services in 144 countries. However, he has plans to pursue his Ph.D. and says he would love to return to teach in ACU's College of Business Administration.
"I am very proud of my school and what it stands for," Kyle says. "ACU's mission is definitely something I bought into while in school, and I would love to have the ability to be a part of furthering that mission as a part of the faculty."
Kyle, who grew up in Ghana as the son of missionaries, found at ACU "a unique environment, an environment where it is always 'safe' to be a follower of Jesus Christ. I am speaking from experience, being a Christian is not easy outside the ACU environment."
Mentors and friends
He also found faculty members who became his friends, as well as mentors. "The faculty at ACU - not just in COBA - invest a tremendous amount of their time tending to the needs of their students outside the classroom," he says. "A large part of my learning took place outside the classroom. Not only are our faculty concerned with our academic achievements, they also are equally committed to fostering our spiritual and personal growth. It is this level of commitment exhibited by our faculty that make ACU distinctive."
Public Accounting Report, which rates universities that offer master's degrees in accountancy or taxation, is a leading provider of competitive intelligence for public accounting firms and the profession.
"Being ranked nationally is a tribute to our faculty for their teaching and research and to our students for their performance in the classroom, as well as for their success on the CPA exam and for the achievements in their careers," says Bill Fowler, associate professor of accounting and chair of the Department of Accounting and Finance.
The rankings are formulated using PAR's Annual Survey of Accounting Professors school rankings, which seeks to measure accounting professors' perceptions regarding the programs they believe most consistently turn out students capable of someday attaining partner status.
"This status just affirms that COBA students are getting a top-tier education and a good foundation for their careers," says Fowler.