Accounting and Finance

The Accounting and Finance Department's mission is to educate accountants and finance professionals who are prepared for a dynamic and changing world.

Within the accounting and finance major, we offer three paths to success. An explanation of the differences in curriculum among these three paths is located on the Curriculum page.

CPA preparation concentration. This concentration prepares students to sit for the Certified Public Accounting (CPA) during their senior year or upon graduation. Due to changes in CPA requirements, most states (including Minnesota) require 150 credit hours of education to obtain the CPA certification. A heavy class load is therefore required. Students on this concentration take classes in all the major accounting disciplines, which prepares them for success in passing the different sections of the CPA exam, as well as assists them in choosing a career path within the accounting industry. Our students traditionally pass the CPA exam at much higher rates than the national average. And we can help students achieve the 150 credit hours in four years, whereas other colleges often require five years.

Finance concentration. This concentration prepares students for careers focusing on financial analysis, including careers as a stock broker, securities analyst, investment banker, financial planner, or in the finance department of a corporation. This concentration is designed for students with a strong interest in learning about investments in the stock market, securities analysis, derivatives, corporate finance, international finance, and similar topics.  For students who enroll in the Fall of 2011 and beyond, changes to this concentration will apply.

Traditional accounting concentration. Since many students are interested in accounting but do not desire to sit for the CPA exam right away (or ever), the traditional accounting concentration provides a broader, more general view of accounting. This concentration is ideal for students interested in understanding the language of business, but who are planning to explore entrepreneurial opportunities, or are looking for a career in a business' accounting department.

Overview of Program

  • Through a series of two and four credit classes and internships, we can prepare you to take the CPA exam in four years.
  • Our courses include an emphasis on real-world applications and business writing and communication skills.
  • The major includes a finance track that focuses on economics, international finance and corporate financial analysis.

Department Highlights

  • CSB/SJU graduates score particularly well on the CPA examination because of the strength of the accounting program and our liberal arts focus within the program.
  • The Accounting and Finance Club sponsors visits to accounting firms, guest speakers, mock interviews and fun activities.
  • The Accounting and Finance department has a 32-computer mobile laptop lab for use in class settings, giving students hands-on opportunities to enhance computer skills, learn new technlogy skills and utilize technology as a learning tool.
  • Exceptional opportunties exist to interview on-campus for internships, summer experience programs and full-time employment. All four Big 4 firms and a host of other firms and companies come to campus to interview our wonderful students.