AICPA Now Accepting Applicants to George Willie Scholarship Program
New York (February 2, 2021) – The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) is now accepting applications for the Private Companies Practice Section (PCPS) George Willie Ethnically Diverse Student Scholarship and Internship program.
The George Willie program provides a scholarship and internship to ten ethnic minority accounting students who intend to pursue their CPA licensure. The AICPA doubled the number of scholarships and internships available in 2021. The program provides ten students up to $10,000 each with their final academic year tuition, while ten PCPS member firms each sponsor a student for an internship during the 2022 busy season (January to April).
The participating member firms are:
- Abdo, Eick & Meyers, Edina/Minneapolis and Mankato, MN
- Anders CPA, St. Louis, MO
- Bowman & Company, Voorhees Township, NJ
- Dean Dorton, Lexington and Louisville, KY
- Gumbiner Savett Inc., Santa Monica, CA
- King & Oliason, Seattle, WA
- Krost CPAs, Pasadena and Woodland Hills, CA
- Moss Adams, All office locations.
- O’Connor & Drew P.C., Braintree, MA
- SobelCo, Livingston and Woodcliff Lake, NJ
“The George Willie program is a great opportunity for students to gain an understanding of the skills and knowledge they’ll need in a career as a CPA,” said Carl Peterson, CPA, CGMA, Association International of Certified Professional Accountants’ vice president of small firm interests. “These internships also allow the firms an opportunity to diversify their recruiting efforts and attract talented accounting students.”
This program was created in honor of George Willie, CPA, CGMA, a former chair of AICPA’s PCPS Executive Committee and the AICPA Minority Initiatives Committee. During his more than 35-year career, Willie has promoted the benefits of a career in accounting to students and young professionals in pursuit of the CPA license.
The Willie program is open to racial and ethnic minority students pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in accounting or an accounting-related major. Applicants also must plan to sit for the CPA exam. Full eligibility requirements and selection criteria are available online.
“The AICPA is committed to bolstering diversity and inclusivity in the profession, and this is a great vehicle for doing that,” said Shelly Frazier, CPA, senior manager of Diversity and Inclusion. “Not only does the program help minority students complete their accounting education, but it connects students and firms, offering the potential to build life-long careers.”
This program is one of ways the AICPA is working to broaden the pipeline of talent entering the profession. The U.S. census projects that minorities will comprise the majority of the population in the U.S. by 2045. A more diverse and inclusive profession will be better equipped to address the shifts in entrepreneurial capital that will result from these changing demographics. And studies have shown that businesses that are more diverse perform better than their peers.
Students interested in the program can visit aicpa.org/pcpsscholarship for more information. Applications are currently open, with a deadline of April 16, 2021.
The AICPA is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion in the profession, and this is one of several programs dedicated toward that effort. The Accounting Inclusion Maturity Model is a tool to help organizations assess and measure their diversity and inclusion efforts. The Accounting Scholars Leadership Workshop is an annual, all-expenses-paid event for racial and ethnic minority students to strengthen their professional and networking skills, while helping them to prepare for a career in accounting. The AICPA Scholarship Award for Minority Accounting Students, part of the AICPA Legacy Scholars program, provides funding to outstanding minority students studying accounting.
The AICPA also is offering workshops to help firms and organizations to address diversity and inclusion issues through difficult conversations within the workplace.
About the American Institute of CPAs
The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) is the world’s largest member association representing the CPA profession, with more than 429,000 members in the United States and worldwide, and a history of serving the public interest since 1887. AICPA members represent many areas of practice, including business and industry, public practice, government, education and consulting. The AICPA sets ethical standards for its members and U.S. auditing standards for private companies, nonprofit organizations, federal, state and local governments. It develops and grades the Uniform CPA Examination, offers specialized credentials, builds the pipeline of future talent and drives professional competency development to advance the vitality, relevance and quality of the profession.
About the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants
The Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (the Association) is the most influential body of professional accountants, combining the strengths of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) to power opportunity, trust and prosperity for people, businesses and economies worldwide. It represents 657,000 members and students across 179 countries and territories in public and management accounting and advocates for the public interest and business sustainability on current and emerging issues. With broad reach, rigor and resources, the Association advances the reputation, employability and quality of CPAs, CGMAs and accounting and finance professionals globally.