Wake Forest Schools of Business Students Achieve Highest CPA Exam Pass Rate in Nation

11.30.2011 General, News Release

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Wake Forest Schools of Business students achieved the #1 pass rate in the nation on the Certified Public Accountant Exam among candidates (with and without advanced degrees) from nearly 2,000 colleges and universities. Wake Forest students have earned the top ranking nine times since the School began offering a Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) degree in 1997, more than any other university during the same time period.

Wake Forest students led first-time exam candidates by achieving an overall pass rate of 96%, compared to the next closest university at 88% (among those who have not yet earned an advanced degree). The results were recently reported in the 2011 Edition of Candidate Performance on the Uniform CPA Examination. Nationally, the overall pass rate during this same period was less than 55%.

“The MSA program at Wake Forest is known for its rigorous curriculum,” said Jack Wilkerson, Academic Director of Wake Forest Accountancy programs. “High caliber students are attracted to the program and they leave well prepared to serve the profession.”

Wake Forest MSA students complete a for-credit internship during the accounting profession’s “busy season” of January through mid-March. They also serve in a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program to provide tax preparation services to low-income individuals. Consistently, 100% of the program’s graduates accept job offers prior to graduation, with most students receiving multiple offers.

“The accountancy faculty, led by Jack Wilkerson, should be commended for their personal dedication to the success of our students both inside and outside of the classroom. This result would not have been achievable without the focused efforts of our professors and students and the support of our staff, alumni and corporate partners,” said Charles Iacovou, Senior Associate Dean of Faculty, Wake Forest Schools of Business.

An individual must pass the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination in order to qualify for licensure as a CPA in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and major U.S. Territories. The exam is written and graded by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and administered by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy, Inc. (NASBA). The exam takes two days and consists of four parts: Auditing & Attestation, Financial Accounting & Reporting, Regulation, and Business Environment & Concepts.

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