One Firm’s Answer to the 150 Credit Hour Requirement

For many younger employees, benefits can seem pretty irrelevant. Not at Beers & Cutler, a leading accounting and consulting firm in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. On Monday, Beers & Cutler announced its 150 Hour Tuition Reimbursement Program.

The program is an innovative tuition reimbursement program to assist qualified undergraduate and graduate students in meeting the 150 credit hour requirement in order to sit for the CPA exam. Typically, this requires approximately 30 more credit hours than the average student obtains pursuing a four-year degree.

Tuition reimbursement programs are not new. Many companies offer them and even specify that the course of study be relevant to the employee’s job or career with the employer. Sitting for the CPA exam is certainly relevant to a career at Beers & Cutler. What makes the 150 Hour Tuition Reimbursement Program different is that it offers students two options prior to beginning their job at the firm.

Option 1 Students may begin work at the firm in 2006 and Beers & Cutler will pay university expenses (tuition, fees and books) while they go to school part-time to meet eligibility requirements.

Option 2 Students may remain in school full-time and Beers & Cutler will pay university expenses (tuition, fees and books) for additional course work to meet eligibility requirements. Students may begin working at the firm in 2007.

In addition, students must maintain a “B” average or better to be reimbursed for tuition, fees and books upon completion of their coursework. The firm offers complete financial forgiveness after three years of employment with Beers & Cutler. Students choosing to work and attend school part-time will be supported through flexible work schedules allowing them to meet school demands.

“Although accounting is becoming an increasingly popular major, the profession is currently facing a shortage of qualified people. We’re addressing this issue by allowing top talent to get a head start on their careers at no direct expense to them,” Ed Offterdinger, Beers & Cutler managing partner said in the statement announcing the launch of the new program. “Our unique approach to helping students address the 150 hour CPA requirement demonstrates our commitment to attracting the best and the brightest students.”

Students eligible to take the CPA exam in 2006 shouldn’t feel left out, either. Beers & Cutler is offering a $5,00 sign-on bonus for joining the staff full-time, according to the announcement.

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