What is distinctive about an Accounting major at Illinois College?
The accounting program embraces the liberal arts curriculum by fostering students’ abilities in data analysis, problem solving, decision-making, and communication on a professional level. Within the accounting field, students obtain an understanding of the decisions made in various organizations, such as for-profit and non-profit private organizations, as well as public service and governmental organizations.
Within the classroom students’ capacity for reason and judgment is polished through simulations of cross-functional teams, problem solving, and presentations. While participating in intellectual enhancement and stimulation, students are becoming prepared for positions of leadership, service, and management.
What opportunities are available for students?
Students in all academic disciplines, including accounting, are strongly encouraged to acquire practical experience by completing an internship. The Career Center, located in Baxter Hall, is Illinois College’s main resource for matching a student’s interest with their field of study. Brian Hartsock, an accounting major from the class of 2007, recently took an accounting internship with HD Smith Wholesale Drug Company in Springfield, IL. Working for the division controller of the organization gave Hartsock, “the opportunity to experience what a job would be like for a corporate accountant.” While some students choose to do a formal internship for academic credit, others work part-time for local organizations. Past internship providers and employers include banks, state agencies, Certified Public Accountant (CPA) firms, insurance companies, and manufacturing companies.
In the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA), students provide income tax preparation assistance to clients of the Prairie Council on Aging. Not only does this opportunity allow a chance to provide community service, but it also allows students to gain experience in the preparation of individual income tax returns.
The Accounting Club is a student organization which provides an opportunity for students to learn about accounting as a career. Activities include guest speakers, annual auditing of student organizations, and participation in professional meetings. Networking within the field of accounting is maintained through professional organizations, potential internship providers and employers.
The Illinois College Warren Billhartz Student Investment Club is a student organization, which teaches what investing consists of and how to invest wisely. In using real money, the students have the chance to see firsthand the effects the market has on the investment portfolio. Along with learning various skills, the group also takes various trips throughout the year to businesses such as the Archer Daniel Midland’s headquarters in Decatur, IL and the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting in Omaha, NE.
Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) is a global not-for-profit education organization aimed at helping world citizens understand the principles and values of market economics. Members of SIFE compete nationally against teams from other colleges and universities based upon completed projects and formal presentations.
How can I earn the additional hours to meet the requirements for the CPA Exam?
- Take college level courses as part of your senior year curriculum in high school
- Attend summer school at any accredited college
- Take more than the traditional 15-semester hours each term
- Enroll in graduate school to work toward a Masters Degree while completing the CPA requirements.
What opportunities are available after graduation?
Accounting students have accepted jobs at Archer Daniels Midland, State Farm Insurance, Boeing, Caterpillar, Illinois State Offices, Dot Foods, Inc., and local CPA firms. They have taken positions as auditors, staff accountants, loan officers, executive team leaders, internal auditors, and tax accountants. In conjunction with employment, many of IC’s graduates are pursuing higher degrees.
Faculty Members in the Accounting Program