UCLA Rattles Accounting Students with Program Changes

Acknowledging the changing times confronting the accounting profession, UCLA has made some controversial changes to its accounting minor requirements, forcing some students to attend summer school so they can finish on time.

Realizing the accounting program isn’t producing the desired amount of CPAs, UCLA officials took steps to make their program more competitive and to make graduates more appealing to accounting firms.

"The changes come in line with the fact that accounting has changed a lot and our program hadn't," David Aboody, the area chair and associate professor of accounting at the UCLA Anderson School of Management, told the Daily Bruin, the school’s newspaper. Just 80 of the 350 students entering the program over the last two years ended up taking the CPA exam.

"We haven't been fulfilling our mission, which is to produce CPAs," Aboody said.

The school is capping accounting minors at 150 per year, which officials say will make it more competitive by attracting only those students who are most serious about becoming CPAs.

The changes, which go into effect this fall, have caught many students off guard.

"I had my four years all planned out for a major and double minor, which is an already-packed schedule," second-year pre-economics student Ara Ko, told the Bruin. "Now I will have to take a few quarters with four classes or go to summer school because of the extra management courses required."

Regardless, school officials are adamant that the changes are needed.

"We don't want the program to be the easiest; we want it to be the best," Francesca Baugh, associate director of the Undergraduate Minor in Accounting Program, told the Bruin.

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