Accounting and Public Accounting

Lead faculty: Professor Grace F. Johnson and Professor David Mead

Click here for the Accounting major degree audit

Click here for the Public Accounting major degree audit

Click here for the Accounting minor degree audit

What undergraduate major has been in high demand in the last few years? Accounting! The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) Job Outlook Survey of 2015 indicated accounting is the second most demanded major of all undergraduate majors. This continues a trend observed by NACE since 2008.

{short description of image}Accounting is central to any business -- that's why good accountants are always in demand. As an accounting major at Marietta, you'll learn accounting from faculty who are certified public accountants. They'll teach you the technical aspects, and then they take the extra step of teaching you why these aspects are important. Throughout the accounting programs, the "why" as well as the "how" is emphasized. The desire to go beyond the mechanics of accounting is consistent with the liberal arts context of all Marietta's business majors. You'll also examine current issues in accounting in our Accounting Research course—classes you won't find in many undergraduate programs. Plus, our close ties to universities in China and Brazil give you the opportunity to study and work in a major emerging market for up to a year.

Pictured above: accounting seniors present their capstone research at All Scholars Day 2015. Below, Professor Mead's Cost Accounting students tour the Marietta Eramet manufacturing facility.

{short description of image}The College offers two degrees with a concentration in accounting. The 150-hour Public Accounting degree equips students to sit for the Uniform CPA examination. The 120-hour Accounting degree is ideal for students planning graduate work or immediate entry into the accounting profession and where the CPA qualification is not a requirement. The 120-hour Accounting degree qualifies a student to take the Certified Management Accounting (CMA) examination. Most states have introduced a 150-hour education requirement for sitting for the Uniform Certified Public Accounting (CPA) Examination and subsequent licensing as a CPA. Some states, such as Ohio, require two years' work experience before licensing is possible. There are minor distinctions among states as to specific requirements, but the 150-hour BA degree with a major in Public Accounting should meet the requirements of most states. If you are unsure about the requirements of the state in which you reside, you should contact one of the College's accounting faculty members.

{short description of image}You can complete the 150-hour degree within four years if courses are taken in the summer, but most students finish the program in 4 1/2 years. Marietta offers an attractive tuition-free grant for the last semester of coursework in the 150-hour degree program. To take advantage of the final semester tuition waiver, a student and her/his academic advisor must submit the tuition waiver form by the end of the student's junior year (defined by the College Catalog as 91 credit hours).

Pictured above: Marietta College alum Cody Meglio (left) and his colleague Cole Malcolm meet with interested accounting majors to talk about internships available at the Charleston, WV, office of Ernst & Young.

The choice depends upon the student's situation and career goals. Students can consult any of the accounting faculty for help with course selection and career planning. Students who are planning to do graduate work in accounting should be aware that many graduate schools recommend that their entering students have a strong background in economics and mathematics, e.g., Economics 211, 212, and 349; and Mathematics 123 and 125.

Students should check into the specific requirements of graduate programs in which they are interested since entrance requirements vary widely from program to program.

The majors provide preparation for students interested in sitting for the Uniform CPA Examination (CPA) and Certified Management Accountant (CMA) examination. Most states have legislated a 150-hour education requirement for sitting for the CPA examination and subsequent certification as a CPA. Students at Marietta wishing to pursue the public accounting major enroll in a 150-hour bachelor of arts degree which satisfies the education requirements in many states.

The Marietta model is unusual and has several benefits, not the least of which is typical completion within 4 1/2 years without having to change colleges. Marietta offers an attractive tuition-free grant for the last semester of coursework in the 150-hour degree program.

Students can interact with accounting and business professionals through various venues ranging from professional networking socials to the Marietta Chamber of Commerce's Business After Hours to meetings of the local chapter of the West Virginia Society of CPAs.

Our full-time accounting faculty members are CPAs with years of diverse experience. Marietta has formal ties to universities in China and Brazil and as is the case with many of Marietta's business faculty, the accounting instructors have experience teaching and doing research in those countries. While the faculty have a record of publishing and research -- often carried out jointly with students -- they are first and foremost teachers.

The College's General Education program requires students to experience a variety of disciplines, starting with a special First Year Seminar and continuing throughout the student's four years. Typically, students majoring in business subjects take their first business course in either the second semester of their freshman year or the first semester of their sophomore year. Students should consult the College Catalogue to learn the graduation requirements for the degree programs.

Last updated: 15-April-2015, B&E Department webmaster