The younger generation paves the way for the future, which is why CPA Alberta is dedicated to providing educational resources about the profession at the high school level.
CPA Alberta’s high school initiatives strive to provide new avenues and perspectives on the diverse career opportunities available in business and accounting, along with providing general information and resources for researching career opportunities. Since the initiatives’ inception in 2015, it has grown immensely.
David Marcone, Manager of Business Development with CPA Alberta, led the growth of the program as a means to provide high school students with an opportunity to learn more and consider the profession as a career choice. The program is comprised of several educational proponents, including the Diverse Careers in Business & Accounting Presentation, attending high school career fairs, and the CPA High School Ambassador Program.
The Diverse Careers in Business & Accounting Presentation is an interactive presentation designed to broaden high school students’ perspectives about the profession and the opportunities available in a CPA career path. The presentation also encourages students to pursue post-secondary education and outlines a variety of options to help them choose a career path that best suits their goals.
“In terms of the presentation itself, it focuses on the diversity of roles in business and accounting, correlating the CPA designation with business leadership, and breaks down the common stereotypes of the profession,” explains David.
The first point of contact is a high school’s career services team, where information about the program is provided. From there, the proper audience is identified and the school requests the type of presentation, resource or information that fits its needs.
“It’s dependent on the needs of the school, the opportunities present, and how busy they are. Our presentations are pretty popular and we’ve developed lasting relationships with many high schools across Alberta,” says David.
Since 2015, CPA Alberta has completed 227 high school presentations, reaching 5,284 students across Alberta.
The CPA High School Ambassador program also continues to grow, giving students not only an opportunity to be leaders within their schools, but also adds valuable experience/education to their resumes. A total of 78 high school ambassadors have successfully completed the ambassador program over the past two years.
“These students feel proud of this title and for CPA Alberta, they’re a point of contact we can lean on to promote an upcoming event and help us during events,” notes David.
Another exciting component geared towards today’s youth is CPA Career Connections, an event which welcomes high school students and their parents to listen to a panel of local Chartered Professional Accountants speak about their career paths and answer questions. Alberta universities also had booths set up during the event, giving students an opportunity to learn about course choices and ask any questions regarding their next educational step. The most recent CPA Career Connections was recently held in Calgary, and another Career Connections event is planned for Edmonton in April 2018.
Providing students with information and resources about the business and accounting profession is the goal of CPA Alberta’s high school initiatives and moving forward, the future is bright – both for the program, and for the high school students who are taking advantage of it!
More information regarding CPA Alberta high school initiatives can be found here.