For over three decades the CPA Education Foundation (Foundation) has been committed to supporting business and accounting education in Alberta. As the charitable arm of CPA Alberta, the Foundation has a legacy of supporting students and candidates of all backgrounds, from high school students stepping into the world of business for the first time to aiding CPA Professional Education Program (CPA PEP) candidates who are on their way to receiving their designation. Making a donation only takes a few minutes, but it has the power to make a huge difference. Wondering how you can shape the future of an aspiring CPA? If you or your organization are interested in supporting the CPA Education Foundation email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit cpaalberta.ca/foundation. December 31st is the last day to donate to the CPA Education Foundation to receive a 2018 tax receipt.
This article also appears in the 2018 Fall/Winter issue of CPA Alberta’s Dividends magazine, and was written by Kayla Gaffney.
Claire Dallaire CPA, CGA received her designation at 50-years old, proving that it’s never too late to pursue a career that you are passionate about. Now Claire is encouraging candidates who need a little bit of help to get back on track by creating her own award through the Foundation, where she hopes to support students who decide to go back to school and thrive in the face of adversity.
“I had good people who believed in me. They encouraged me and sometimes that’s what you need to make it through,” says Claire. “We are only strong when we have people with us. Together we can accomplish great things.”
Her philosophy is simple: Do good while you are here on this earth so that you can see your kindness in action. Through her award, Claire is doing just that.
Education is more than a degree, diploma, or certification; it’s an opportunity. And this is what donors, like Claire, give to students through the Foundation. Claire also hopes to inspire the next generation of CPAs, especially those struggling to stay on track to reach their end goals. To all post-secondary and high school students, Claire says: “Never give up. A failure is a failure, but you can turn around and try again. Be determined to succeed.”
As the inaugural recipient of the Claire Dallaire CPA, CGA CPA PEP Encouragement Award, Peter Desmond has the drive to achieve the same success that his scholarship’s namesake experienced during her career as a CPA. Today, Peter is making a positive impact on clients and in his community while working at Ross & Sylvestre LLP in the Lakeland region, but his journey has not been an easy one.
Peter grew up in the small bilingual community of St. Paul, Alberta. From an early age he took to the French language, something his French-speaking clients are now very grateful for. After completing a Bachelor of Management in accounting at the University of Lethbridge, Peter began working at a public accounting firm. Unfortunately, six months later, his personal circumstances changed and he had to make the difficult decision to withdraw from CPA PEP.
Moving back to St. Paul and taking a job as a labourer made Peter feel like he was getting further and further away from his dream job in accounting and he began to worry that he would never return to the accounting profession. But Peter’s hard work and dedication to the profession that he loves paid off and he was offered a position with Ross & Sylvestre LLP. With this job offer he could also re-enroll in CPA PEP.
“Having to leave the accounting profession was worrying—it has been my dream career since my first year of university. With my current employment and being enrolled in CPA PEP, I am on my way to fulfilling this dream,” says Peter. Due in part to Claire’s support, Peter is back on track and well on his way to a bright future in the profession.
He will never forget Claire Dallaire’s generosity, and Peter hopes that one day he will be able to donate back to the program to support a candidate’s journey through the CPA Professional Education Program.
Thanks to donors like Claire, hundreds of students—including Peter—have been supported by awards, bursaries, and scholarships offered through the Foundation. In addition to providing financial support, donors offer inspiration through their generosity and continued support of the CPA Education Foundation.