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 Honors Strengthens Accounting Program

When it comes to accounting, all things must add up. Take for example the new Honors Accounting program in the Merrick School of Business – the logical next step for a degree with a reputation on the rise. In addition to being ranked first in terms of the number of alumni managing or co-managing Baltimore’s largest 25 accounting firms, the school will be the first in the area to offer an Honors Accounting program beginning this fall.

This new effort invites our best and brightest undergraduate accounting majors to participate in an assortment of career building activities and special assignments. Phil Korb, M.S. '78, chair of the department of accounting and adviser for the program, believes that students and their future employers will benefit from the program’s high standards.

“In speaking with fellow CPA and accounting professionals, members of our accounting advisory board and students, I envision UB as the preferred recruiting choice for accounting talent in Baltimore,” Korb says. “We have designed the program so that a select group of accounting majors will have the opportunity to build their résumés and add value to the workplace. We want these students to have successful careers—to do so they will need to develop critical thinking skills and that’s where the Honors Accounting program comes in.”

The program will recruit students with the highest GPAs in accounting and offer them the opportunity to be immersed in an enriched accounting curriculum, to interact with accounting faculty and alumni in informal settings, and go on field trips and employer site visits. Additional benefits will include internship opportunities with some of the area’s best accounting firms.

Other market differentiators go to the seriousness of the endeavor – why the word “honors” is in its title: Students will be required to successfully complete an internship, preferably in their junior year, with a public accounting firm or other approved organization; and they will complete two special projects in select courses. They also must participate in the program's extracurricular activities associated with Beta Alpha Psi and other approved accounting-related offerings. They have to meet all of these requirements while maintaining a minimum GPA of 3.5 with no grade lower than a B in any upper level accounting course.

Richard Wolf, a partner at Hertzbach & Company, P.A. and a member of the School’s Accounting Advisory Board, sees the Honors Accounting program as a unique component and a competitive advantage among local universities.

“Area firms are extremely excited about this new program,” Wolf says. “UB alumni are found throughout the Baltimore accounting community. This program allows area firms to interact with UB students who have already demonstrated strong academic performance and a desire to major in accounting, and it lays the groundwork for many strong opportunities.”

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