New Graduate Degree Program in Accounting Approved for East Stroudsburg University
Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education Chancellor Daniel Greenstein, D. Phil., approved a master’s degree in accounting for East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania on Friday, May 3. This new 30 credit graduate degree will officially be implemented in fall of 2019 and is geared toward those interested in a professional or academic career in the field.
With the Bachelor of Science in accounting approved spring 2018, the Master of Science in accounting will extend ESU’s disciplinary offerings. The combination of these programs meet the requirement of 150 post-secondary credit hours of education in order to be considered “qualified” to sit for the Uniform Certified Public Accountant (CPA) examination.
“The Master of Science in accounting allows our students to gain the required credits to sit for CPA, while allowing them to gain more knowledge and expertise about accounting profession,” said Sylvester Williams, J.D., dean of the College of Business and Management. “This additional credential will separate ESU students from others obtaining an undergraduate accounting degree.”
An important aspect of this M.S. in accounting program is that the instructional modality is designed for traditional and non-traditional students with a blend of online and face-to-face instruction, targeting current undergraduate accounting majors and working professionals. These approaches are needed to develop future leaders within the accounting profession with skill sets that display critical and analytical thinking, a sense of history, objectivity, a global perspective, an ethical mindset, ability to synthesize across disciplinary areas, comprehension of complex ideas, exemplary oral and written communication skills, and computing skills, among others. Graduates of this program are likely to have careers as controllers, chief financial officers, government accountants, budget directors, internal or external auditors, forensic accountants, firm valuation experts, personal and corporate tax accountants, and non-profit organization accountants.
According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statics and U.S. News, and Money Magazine, accounting professionals are one of the top of 15 most demanded professions. Accounting is the common language business – a means by which organizations communicate vital financial information. Public and private sector institutions of every size rely on highly skilled accounting professionals to properly manage their finances and protect them from fraud.
“Accountants and auditors as a profession ranked first among the top 15 high-demand occupations aligning to bachelor’s and graduate degrees. The Master’s degree in accounting at ESU is well timed and meets the skilled workforce needs in our region,” Williams said.
ESU is the third of the 14 universities in Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education to offer a graduate degree in accounting, and will offer the region’s only program in a 60-mile radius. In light of the distance between ESU’s program and others, Williams sees tremendous opportunities for collaboration, especially among other State System schools that have undergraduate degrees in accounting. It is hoped that ESU’s master’s degree will enable students from other campuses to enroll in some or all of the advanced courses at ESU in order to earn the advanced degree or, at least, in preparation for the CPA exam. ESU’s program is expected to attract students from not only Northeastern Pennsylvania but also from Morris, Warren and Sussex counties in New Jersey and Orange County in New York.
To apply for the Masters in Science in accounting program at ESU, visit esu.edu/applygrad.