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North Carolina Accounting Schools

The following outline of accounting schools in North Carolina is designed to help you locate schools that are a good match for your skills, interests, and career aspirations. North Carolina’s universities and colleges offer many accounting programs in generalized practice areas as well as specialized practice areas such as managerial accounting, fraud investigation, and information management. You may also find that online accounting schools offer programs and majors specialized to fit your personal interest areas.

Quick School Facts:

  • 68 public colleges and universities offer an accounting degree program in North Carolina.
  • 30 private colleges and universities offer an accounting degree in North Carolina.
  • 53 schools offer a certificate in accounting.
  • 58 schools offer an associate’s degree in accounting.
  • 37 schools offer a bachelor’s degree in accounting.
  • 4 schools ranked in Businessweek’s Top Undergraduate Business Programs in 2013: University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (10), Wake Forest University (18), Elon University (42), North Carolina State University (95).
  • 4 schools ranked in US News Best Business Schools in 2013 (graduate schools): Duke University (11), University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (20), Wake Forest University (47), North Carolina State University (88).

Read on to continue learning about accounting schools in North Carolina and where your career in accounting can take you.

AACSB Accredited Accounting Programs in North Carolina

The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business is a globally recognized organization that provides accreditation for undergraduate and graduate accounting programs. Only 180 accounting programs are currently accredited and have been found to meet the rigorous standards established by the AACSB. The following accounting programs in North Carolina have been accredited by the AACSB:

North Carolina A & T State University (School of Business and Economics)
North Carolina State University (Poole College of Management)
The University of North Carolina at Charlotte (The Belk College of Business)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (Joseph M. Bryan School of Business and Economics)
Wake Forest University (Schools of Business)

Highest First-Time CPA Exam Pass Rate with a Bachelor’s Degree

The following schools had the highest first-time CPA exam pass rates in North Carolina in 2013 for candidates with a bachelor’s degree:

  1. Wake Forest University 88.8%
  2. University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
  3. Appalachian State University
  4. North Carolina State University

This list includes the top schools in North Carolina with at least 20 candidates. There were 27 schools in North Carolina that sent first-time candidates with a bachelor’s degree and the pass rate ranged from 15.2% to 96.0% (including schools with fewer than 20 candidates) according to the 2013 NASBA report. For data on all schools, see the 2013 NASBA Uniform CPA Examination Candidate Performance report provided by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.

North Carolina Accounting Graduate Degree Programs

Duke University

Prestigious Duke University has a comprehensive MBA program that features world-class faculty and a wide variety of topic coverage within the course curriculum. Classes in the Daytime MBA program run longer than typical sessions, in order to give students and instructors the time they need to understand and practice complex principles thoroughly and in great depth. Duke also has an undergraduate Accounting program, from which many of the school’s graduate students transfer.

North Carolina State

North Carolina State University’s Poole College of Management runs an accounting graduate program that is highly sought-after by business students. Class size is kept to a minimum and graduates enjoy an incredibly high job placement rate (96% for the Class of 2012). CPA preparation is a big part of the program, and students are offered several study abroad opportunities during the course of their studies. Local firms are quick to offer both internships and full-time positions to students and graduates.

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North Carolina Accounting Undergraduate Degree Programs

North Carolina Central University

North Carolina Central University offers Bachelor’s of Business Administration with an Accounting major. The program is broad, and is designed to prepare students for a diverse array of careers within the industry. CPA preparation is a part of the available course load for those students who desire public certification. Some BBA students also choose to transition to a Master’s program as they finish their undergraduate course studies.

Appalachian State University

Appalachian State University, located in Boone, is home to the Walker College of Business. At Walker, students can earn a bachelor-level accounting degree from the school’s well-respected Department of Accounting. The course load is multi-faceted and designed to give students a deep understanding of the business concepts and ethical responsibilities vital to their chosen field. Walker also offers a master’s program in accounting for those students who want to continue their business education.

Top Ranked Accounting Schools in North Carolina

US News Best Undergrad Accounting Programs
University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill #12 (2012)
Wake Forest University #16

US News Best Accounting MBA Programs
University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill (Kenan-Flagler) #10 (2012)
Duke University (Fuqua) #20

Businessweek Top Undergrad Accounting Programs
Wake Forest University #26 (2012)
University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill (Kenan-Flagler) #39
North Carolina State University (Poole) #57
Elon University (Love) #68

Career Opportunities for Accounting Grads in North Carolina

North Carolina is home to several top accounting firms, as well as various government agencies – both state and federal – that provide ample opportunity for long-term career placement for accounting graduates. Large companies like BMW Manufacturing Corp. and SCANA Communications are headquartered in the state and employ many tax and accounting specialists throughout the many divisions of their operations.

CPA Requirements in North Carolina

To obtain public accounting certification in North Carolina, a bachelor’s degree is required. Applicants must also have successfully completed at least 150 hours of course studies at an accredited higher learning institution. Also required is a score of 50% or better on the GMAT or GRE tests. The state offers a few opportunities for obtaining the experience necessary to sit for the exam. The first is to have one full year of supervised accounting experience. The second option is to have at least four years of unsupervised accounting experience, in either the public or private sector. Additionally, individuals who have at least four years of related teaching experience may qualify.

North Carolina Accounting Salary and Jobs by Metro Area

Metro Area Accountants & Auditors Employed Average Annual Salary
Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill 8,690 $71,470
Durham-Chapel Hill 2,140 $72,900
Fayetteville 630 $62,080
Jacksonville 120 $62,660
Raleigh-Cary 5,040 $65,880
Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News 5,140 $63,790

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2011.

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Schools with Accounting Degree Programs in North Carolina

Appalachian State University
287 Rivers St
Boone, NC 28608
(828) 262-2000
www.appstate.edu

Student Review: “Participating in the Appalachian State University accounting degree program at the Walker School of Business has been one of my greatest journeys. The program seemed at times overwhelming, however; I can now look back and see that the program prepared me to easily enter and transition into a graduate program and prepared me for the hard deadlines in my current profession. The program is and has been for years now ranked at the top among accounting degree programs for both regional and state-supported universities. The program offers great access to instructors and their teacher assistants (TA’s), access to other resources and the opportunity to gain valuable and relevant work experience that can be of great benefit to those students who choose to take advantage of these excellent opportunities and place these relevant experiences on their resumes or CV or record them on their applications for graduate or other professional school applications. I am sincerely grateful for the learning experience that the accounting program offered and am even more sincerely grateful to those instructors and other individuals that I was exposed to during my journey at Appalachian State University who inspired and had a helping hand in the building of the happy, fulfilled life I live today.”
stars-5

North Carolina State University
1005 Capability Dr
Raleigh, NC 27607
(919)-515-2011
http://www.ncsu.edu/

Student Review: “The NC State accounting program was one of the best after talking with fellow friends at other colleges. The opportunities, accessibility, and helpfulness of the program is what kept me going and interested in the program. The professors in the program are all excellent and have real world experience to back up their teaching. The staff’s main goal is to assist students in job placement and passing the CPA exam (we have a great passing rate!). In addition, the program provides all the tools to prepare students for work life after graduation.” – student at North Carolina State University
stars-4

Campbell University
143 Main St
Buies Creek, NC 27506
(800)-334-4111
http://www.campbell.edu/

Student Review: “My experience with the accounting program at Campbell University was a pleasant one. At times I wondered if I should have gone to a larger university but I believe if I did I would not have had as great of an experience as I did at Campbell. One of the best parts I believe about attending a smaller university are the class sizes, as well as the relationships you are able to build with your professors. I had some classes with as little as ten or twelve students which made that learning experience much more personal. This also allowed for close relationships with professors to form to the point where you were a student whom they actually cared about rather than just another name on the attendance sheet. The knowledge and education I gained from the accounting program at Campbell has enabled me to excel career wise in that field. Also, the exposure from the program such as alumni connections, internship opportunities, and the multitude of incoming guest speakers and other professors allowed for networking opportunities, the ability to build relationships, as well as being able to speak with others about how the classroom experiences relate to real world application.” – student at Campbell University
stars-4

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro
1400 Spring Garden St
Greensboro, NC 27412
(336) 334-5000
www.uncg.edu/

Student Review: “I have attended UNCG for 4 years and am an accounting major. When I first enrolled in the major I was unsure if it was what I really wanted to do in life. However, the instructors in the accounting department soon showed me how satisfying the practice can be. With the exceptions of graduate assistants, every instructor was an expert in their field. Every time I had a question about a topic (such as prime cost or audit procedure) I was met with a friendly and helpful answer. I felt less like a student and more like a peer. Graduate assistants are always available to tutor students in the accounting program. Overall I have enjoyed my experience here and can’t wait to begin my career in the field!” -Andrew M., student at University of North Carolina at Greensboro
stars-4

Student Review: “The University of North Carolina offers an excellent business program. What I believe is so great about the university is that it has its own business department called The Bryan School of Business and Economics. This department is specially focused on the whole business aspect of the degree. As a freshman, I had a special advisor that worked only in the business department of the university so I didn’t have to worry about taking the wrong courses or taking courses that wouldn’t help me progress in my major. The university offers both online and classroom/lecture classes. The classes are challenging, but they are not too difficult. The professors that I have had so far are amazing. They listen to you and they are often times willing to help you with any questions or problems you may incur while taking their course.” -Shakori B., student at University of North Carolina at Greensboro
stars-4


References:
1. National Center for Education Statistics: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Businessweek Top Business School Rankings Undergraduate Business School Programs: http://www.bloomberg.com/businessweek/graphics/2013-bs-undergrad-rankings/rankings2.html
3. US News & World Report Best Graduate Business Schools: http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools/mba-rankings/