Undergraduate students from around the country recently participated in the inaugural Accounting for the Future program at Wake Forest University, presented by the university’s School of Business and sponsored by Big Four firm Deloitte.
The program, aimed at increasing diversity and representation in the accounting profession, hosted 28 college sophomores, juniors and seniors over the weekend of April 22-24, where participants learned more about the School of Business and accounting career opportunities.
The weekend saw students network with Deloitte professionals and Wake Forest accounting faculty members, learning about various accounting career options, the future of the profession and the importance of increasing diversity and equity from within. Deloitte’s sponsorship of the event is part of its $75 million Making Accounting Diverse and Equitable (MADE) commitment to boost diversity in the accounting and tax professions.
Student participants in the program who later apply and are admitted to any Wake Forest School of Business Master of Science program will be guaranteed a minimum $15,000 scholarship.
“I’m proud to support this important effort to help increase diversity in our profession,” said Thalia Smith, a partner at Deloitte and partner sponsor for Deloitte’s MADE program, in a statement. “The Future of Accounting, in many ways, will be defined by students like these, and how we as corporate America and universities engage with them and provide exposure to the great career options accounting offers. Over the course of the weekend, it was wonderful to watch the students’ reaction as they heard from professionals who looked like them, and who are doing different and exciting things within accounting. It was so rewarding to see their curiosity and interest grow, and my hope is that they will take what they learned here and share it with others.”
“If there is no representation and diversity within the firm, there will never be any growth,” said Michael Sterling, an undergraduate accounting major at the University of Central Florida who attended the program, in a statement. “Feeling confident in yourself and knowing where you are is where you’re supposed to be, is what resonated the most with me during the discussions. Having the confidence and reassurance that you belong is important and valuable.”
More information on the MADE initiative is available here.