Marist Launches Dual Degree Program in Accountancy; Accelerated Course of Study is One of the Fastest in U.S.

Marist College’s School of Management has launched an accelerated  dual degree accountancy program, allowing students to complete a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science in Professional Accountancy in just four years and four months.

The MSPAccy Program, which is the one of the fastest in the U.S., uses a combination of traditional classroom coursework, distance learning, and an internship experience for the graduate portion. Developed by Dean Lawrence Singleton and Professor of Accounting J. Donald, Warren, Jr., the program satisfies the 150-hour credit requirement to be licensed as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).

“Entering the accounting profession with a graduate degree is more advantageous than having completed additional credits as an undergraduate,” Singleton said. In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics has found that accountants who have a CPA license and a Master’s Degree in accounting have an advantage in the job market; both the Institute of Management Accountants 2016 Annual Salary Survey and the 2017 Robert Half Salary Guide showed professionals holding a graduate degree earned more than those with only an undergraduate degree.

“This program is also responding to a need to help accounting students finish their degrees more quickly and in time for the key hiring season for accounting firms,” said Singleton, who spearheaded a five-year accounting program at George Washington University in Washington, DC.

Marist undergraduates can apply for the program during the sophomore year to maximize the benefits of the accelerated coursework. “Marist students completing the program as designed will be in the workforce for one year and be in line for promotions one full year ahead of their peers who complete the more-typical five year type of course of study,” explained Warren. Warren came to Marist in 2015 to develop and launch the program, drawing from his experience developing a similar program at Rutgers University in New Jersey. 

The program is also an innovative option for students with undergraduate accounting degrees from other institutions. They can complete the Master’s Degree program in about seven months.  That is, they enter the program in late May and complete the program in mid-December which provides them an opportunity to begin their career in a public accounting firm in January.  There’s also additional flexibility: students admitted into the program in the summer may complete up to 60 percent of the degree requirements prior to beginning their career with an accounting firm, with the remaining credits completed in distance learning classes. “This program provides a competitive edge,” Warren explained. 

The Marist School of Management is accredited by AACSB International—The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB)—that connects educators, students, and business to achieve a common goal: to create the next generation of great leaders. AACSB provides quality assurance, business education intelligence, and professional development services to over 1,600 member organizations and nearly 800 accredited business schools worldwide. The new program has been approved by the New York Department of Education. To learn more about the MSPAccy Program visit the program website

About Marist

Located on the banks of the historic Hudson River and at its Florence, Italy branch campus, Marist College is a comprehensive, independent institution grounded in the liberal arts. Its mission is to “help students develop the intellect, character, and skills required for enlightened, ethical, and productive lives in the global community of the 21st century.” Marist is consistently recognized for excellence by The Princeton Review (Colleges That Create Futures and The Best 381 Colleges), U.S. News & World Report (9th Best Regional University/North), Kiplinger’s Personal Finance (“Best College Values”), and others. Though now independent, Marist remains committed to the ideals handed down from its founders, the Marist Brothers: excellence in education, a sense of community, and a commitment to service. Marist educates approximately 5,000 traditional-age undergraduate students and 1,400 adult and graduate students in 47 undergraduate majors and 14 graduate programs, including fully online MBA, MPA, MS, and MA degrees. www.marist.edu

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