Accounting

Accounting

Central's accounting program prepares students for professional careers in public, private, government and not-for-profit accounting. Central students have a strong history of success on the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Management Accountant (CMA) examinations. Central College accounting students are in demand — nearly 100% of accounting graduates are placed in great positions within six months! And Central students ranked 18th in the nation for first-time CPA pass rate among similarly-sized programs.

4
years

Nearly 100% of Central accounting majors graduate in four years
  • AVERAGE CLASS SIZE OF 15-20 ENSURES STUDENT ENGAGEMENT AND SUCCESS
  • 100% OF ACCOUNTING STUDENTS COMPLETE AT LEAST ONE RELEVANT INTERNSHIP, WHICH OFTEN LEAD TO JOB OFFERS BEFORE GRADUATION

The Real World

 

Successful Careers

  • Director, BPT business relationship management - finance, S.C. Johnson & Son, Chicago
  • Director of asset management, CSM Corporation, Minneapolis
  • Senior vice president, Golub Capital, Chicago
  • Accounting manager, oneCare, Atlanta
  • Controller, Interstate Mills, Minneapolis
  • President/Owner, Walstra & Associates, Chicago
  • Accountant, Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids
  • Assurance associate, Deloitte LLP, Davenport
  • Cost accountant, Hormel Foods, Austin, Minn.
  • Staff auditor, State of Iowa Auditor’s Office, Des Moines
  • Assurance associate, McGladrey, LLP, Davenport
  • Accountant, Iowa Realty, Des Moines

Organizations

  • EAM Club (economics, accounting and management)

No matter what your interests are, Central has a student group for you! Learn how you can get involved with groups and organizations at Central.

Stormi Peterson

Stormi Peterson

After networking with two Central board of trustee members, Stormi Peterson '15 found herself getting practical work experience in The Hague in the Netherlands.

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Graduate Placement

Central students interested in pursuing graduate degrees have lots of opportunities for attending graduate school. Central students have gone on to achieve success at nationally renowned institutions.

  • The University of Iowa, business
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln, law
  • Northwestern University, business
  • Northern Illinois University, accounting
  • University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School

Internships

When it comes to future employment or entrance into graduate school, students with internship experience have a proven track record in a professional environment. Central’s powerful alumni network ensures our students have access to some of the best internships available! 

  • AEGON, The Hague, Netherlands
  • Cambridge Investment Research, Fairfield
  • McGladrey, LLP, Des Moines
  • John Deere, various locations
  • Principal Financial, Des Moines

Courses & Faculty

Central’s accounting curriculum begins with a solid foundation in financial and managerial accounting rooted in the liberal arts, including ethics, economics, communication, mathematics and statistics. In upper-level courses, students grow through coverage of a variety of theoretical and applied financial accounting topics, as well as cost, tax and auditing. 

Central’s accounting faculty has designed the curriculum to hone the skills employers value most. Throughout their careers at Central, accounting students will develop public speaking abilities, polish professional writing skills and develop technological competencies. Coursework throughout the curriculum emphasizes critical thinking and application of professional judgment. The senior accounting capstone challenges students to perfect their research and presentation skills in a professional environment.

Learn more about accounting in the course catalog.

Accounting photo
Meet the faculty:
  • Debela Birru, B.S., M.B.A, Associate Professor of Business Management, interest areas include financial markets, investment analysis and portfolio management and global strategic management
  • Andrew Campbell, B.S., M.B.A, Assistant Professor of Business Management, interest areas include leadership and character development, strategic management and marketing and agri-business
  • Sara Dobbin, B.S., M.Acc., Lecturer of Accounting, interest areas include Managerial accounting, auditing
  • Uwaoma Nwaogu, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Economics, interest areas include international trade and finance, monetary economics and labor economics
  • Brian Peterson, B.S., M.A., Ph.D., Professor of Economics, interest areas include public finance, quantitative methods and economic education
  • Jaclyn Rundle, B.S., M.A., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Business Management, interest areas include nonprofit organizations, social entrepreneurship and social enterprise certification methods
  • Maggie Schlerman, B.A., M.Acc., C.P.A., Assistant Professor of Accounting, interest areas include financial accounting and analysis, strategic planning, international accounting and corporate social responsibility
  • Jessica Schuring, B.A., M.B.A, Ph.D., Assistant Professor Economics, interest areas include microeconomics, health economics, labor economics, environmental economics, development economics and economics of discrimination

Sample Schedule

First year
  • Principles of Macroeconomics
  • Principles of Microeconomics
  • Introduction to Computer Science
  • Introduction to Statistics
  • Public Speaking
Sophomore year
  • Introduction to Financial Accounting
  • Introduction to Management Accounting
  • Principles of Management
  • Introduction to Statistics
  • Ethics
Junior year
  • Intermediate Financial Accounting I and II
  • Accounting Information Systems
  • Advanced Management Accounting
  • Individual Tax Accounting
  • Professional Writing
Senior year
  • Advanced Taxation
  • Government and Non-Business Accounting
  • Advanced Financial Accounting
  • Auditing
  • Accounting Research Seminar

The Central Difference

Professional Certifications

Faculty advisors help students interested in pursuing professional certifications ensure success. Each student has a defined pathway to full preparation for certification in his or her area of interest in four years. Examination requirements may be met with accounting coursework, internship experience and international study opportunities.

  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
  • Certified Management Accountant (CMA)
  • Certified Internal Auditor (CIA)
  • Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE)

Facilities

The Weller Center for Business and International Studies houses faculty offices and classrooms for the department of economics, accounting and management, department of sociology and anthropology and department of modern languages.

The $3.9-million building completed in 1999 includes state-of-the-art technologies, a 24-hour computer lab on the main floor and eight high-tech classrooms, two of which contain student computers.

Study Abroad

Students are encouraged to study abroad with one of Central’s international programs to enhance their development as global citizens, or with partner programs in Chicago, Washington, D.C. or New York City. Learn more about Central’s study abroad programs.

Accounting majors are encouraged to study abroad because in an increasingly global economy, employers want to hire graduates who have a larger world perspective. 

Professional Development

Finding and landing your first job is an important step. Central makes sure students are fully prepared for the job search through multiple events focusing on search strategies, resume building, interviewing practice and networking skills.

Central Accouting Students

Learn More

Want to find out more about accounting at Central? Contact us to learn more about this major and our other strong academic programs. Visit campus to observe classes and experience The Central Difference firsthand.