By Jerry J. Maginnis, CPA
The barriers to entry in the CPA profession are high, and the cost of taking the CPA Exam is one of the many things that makes achieving the CPA designation so challenging. Unfortunately, that cost – which includes both fees to sit for the exam and, typically, a prep course – can keep many qualified potential CPAs from reaching their ultimate goal. To address this issue, the Pennsylvania CPA Foundation is awarding $25,000 in CPA Exam Scholarships this year. That’s 25 potential CPAs who will receive $1,000 each to help cover the costs of taking the exam.
As chair of the Pennsylvania CPA Foundation Board, I know the strategic importance of filling the profession’s pipeline with bright, motivated, young professionals. CPA Exam Scholarships play a crucial part in ensuring that talent continues to develop. Julian Brodsky, co-founder of Comcast Corp. and life member of the PICPA, agrees: in fact, Julian has generously donated $25,000 this year to provide these scholarships. We are extremely grateful and proud to have a role model member such as Julian in the Foundation donor family. His generous donation will enable 25 future CPAs the chance to achieve their dreams.
If you are currently studying for and taking the CPA Exam, I urge you to review the requirements for the scholarships and apply by Dec. 31. If you are already a CPA, I hope Julian’s generosity inspires you to see how you can help future CPAs and, in turn, give back to the profession you love. Supporting the Pennsylvania CPA Foundation’s many efforts is a great place to start, and I would be thrilled to discuss with you further opportunities to make a significant impact.
I’ll leave you with a few testimonials from previous CPA Exam Scholarship recipients who share what the award meant to them. Thanks to the support of Julian Brodksy and more than 1,000 of your fellow PICPA members, the future of accounting is in good hands with these young CPAs and the generations to follow.
“I believe the CPA Exam Scholarship is an effective and gracious means of acknowledging the achievements of successful CPA Exam candidates, of making new entrants to the profession feel welcome, of providing fledgling accountants with a professional distinction to burnish their résumés, of encouraging new accountants to network with others in their field through the PICPA, and, not least, of helping job candidates and new hires cover basic costs – such as the price of a good interview outfit – while transitioning into the profession.”
Edward Frede, Gelman & Pelesh PC
“The CPA Exam Scholarship helped me focus more on studying for the exam than worrying about the cost of study aides and exam fees. Being able to focus on the material helped me to not only pass all four parts of the exam, but also win the Elijah Watt Sells Award. Having the CPA title gave me the confidence to seek out a new role in my company. I was able to move positions and open myself up to a range of new opportunities that were not possible before passing the exam.”
Michael Janenko, Olympus
“Although my firm has an amazing benefit to pay up to a certain threshold of expenses, I had long ago expended that amount. The CPA Exam Scholarship helped me offset exam costs and keep moving toward my goal of becoming a CPA and advancing my career. Thank you for your contributions to this very important fund and for the impact it has made on my life.”
Meghan Freidhof, Wessel & Company
Jerry J. Maginnis, CPA, is a board member and audit committee chair for inTEST Corp. in Mount Laurel, N.J., independent director and chair of the audit committee for Cohen & Steers in New York City, executive in residence for Rowan University in Glassboro, N.J., and chair of the Pennsylvania CPA Foundation Board. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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