By Craig Osborne
The Certified Public Accounting certification (CPA) is considered one of the highest achievements an accountant can complete. Passing the test is not hard enough; the State has new requirements to sit for the exam for anyone who files an application after August 1, 2009. Until then, a bachelor’s degree or 120 credit hours with specific classes pertaining to accounting and business were all you needed to sit for the exam. The current seniors in the accounting program will be able to sit for the exam as long as they apply before the deadline. As of August 1, 2009, you will need a master’s degree or 150 credit hours with specific classes in accounting and business. This requirement affects the current juniors who are accounting majors and want to pursue a CPA. Other states have the 150 credit hour requirement already and New York is joining the field.
Siena, widely known for its accounting program, will be behind if its graduates will not be able to sit for the CPA. Local rivals such as The College of Saint Rose and SUNY Albany have master programs up and running with graduates who have a master’s degree in accounting already in the workforce. According to Professor Farley, the master degree program is set to start in the fall of 2010, pending state approval which should come through in the next couple of months. The faculty and board of trustees are very excited and eager to get this program started, and have been working diligently to do so. The program would require the hiring of an additional staff member, as well as a 30 credit hour program. The prerequisites for entering the program would include a minimum B average and the amount of students accepted is 25. If there are any questions or concerns about the program please contact Professor Eugene Farley of the Accounting Department.