Dr. Cindy Vance, Ph.D Dr. Vahid Biglari, Ph.D
Mr. William Conner, MAcc Mr. Robert Perry, MBA
Message from the Accounting Department
Our comprehensive accounting major prepares Shepherd students with the requisite skills for an entry level position in the field of accounting and a basis for continued education at the graduate level. The comprehensive major requires 42 credit hours of core courses (e.g., math, English, history, science) and 78 credit hours of accounting and business administration courses. Some students choose to double major in economics or business administration. The faculty believe that the comprehensive major better prepares students for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam as evidenced by having had the highest pass rates on the CPA exam within the State of West Virginia for multiple years and ranking nationally with a 66.7 percent pass rate for first-time takers in 2018. Additionally, students may fulfill the 150 hour CPA licensure requirement by completing a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree at Shepherd University. By enrolling in the M.B.A. 4+1 program as an undergraduate, a student may obtain a Bachelor’s degree and an M.B.A. degree within 5 years. Additionally, Shepherd University has an articulation agreement with Marshall University for a Master of Science in Accountancy (MSA) degree which grants Shepherd University accounting majors conditional admission at Marshall University during the last term before graduation and recognizes Shepherd courses as meeting the foundation requirements for the MSA program.
Students may also minor in accounting which requires the completion of 15 hours of specific accounting courses.
As part of the elective hours within the accounting program, students are encouraged to enroll in the accounting internship course as many of the internship experiences have led to full-time employment opportunities for the graduate.
All full-time faculty have or are pursuing a doctoral degree. Additionally, all faculty are Certified Public Accountants and have worked outside academia prior to joining the faculty, which enhances the students’ classroom experience.
A career in accounting provides attractive starting salaries and careers that are challenging and exciting. The American Institute of Public Accountants (AICPA) provides a plethora of accounting career guidance and the ThisWayToCPA website provides resources to guide students on the journey to becoming a CPA. The AICPA is promoting University students majoring in accounting according to the 2021-trends-report. As stated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employment of accountants and auditors is projected to grow 10 percent from 2016 to 2026, faster than the average for all occupations”.