Learning the technical skills of accounting is vital to passing the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam. From your very first semester on campus, you’ll learn those skills from PhDs in accounting and CPAs who will share their extensive experience in the classroom.
Drake’s program focuses on the technical content specified in the AICPA CPA Exam Blueprints. Mastery of this content will prepare you for the successful completion of the CPA exam and provide the knowledge and skills demanded in the workforce.
In addition to the technical accounting courses, you will also take courses to enhance your critical thinking, communication, and business acumen. Accounting is a service function so your ability to solve problems, work in a team, and communicate effectively with a wide range of stakeholders is critical.
ACCOUNTANTS, ESPECIALLY CPAs, ARE IN HIGH DEMAND
Accounting majors are high demand. There are a variety of different paid accounting internship options to gain valuable work experience as you complete your degree. You are also able to get up to 6 hours of college credit for these internships! The recruiting period for accounting students is also accelerated so most accounting students accept fulltime offers for after graduation early in their senior year, if not before.
Drake is conveniently located close to downtown Des Moines, and the College of Business and Public Administration (CBPA) courses are generally only offered Monday through Thursday which makes it easier to fit internships into your busy student schedule.
The School of Accounting provides an education in accounting and business law that prepares graduates to assume entry-level positions in public, private, governmental, and not-for-profit accounting. Accounting career options include financial reporting, pricing and costing, auditing, taxation, financial advising, business consulting, budget and planning, data analysis, forensics, and law enforcement. You will find Drake accounting alumni at places such as:
- Big 4 Public Accounting Firms: Deloitte, EY, KPMG, and PwC
- Large CPA firms: RSM, BDO, FORVIS, CLA, Eide Bailly, UHY
- Corporations: Principal Financial Group, Wells Fargo, John Deere, Casey’s General Stores, Dotdash Meredith, Alaska Airlines, Warner Music
- Government: US Secret Service, Department of Justice, US Department of Defense, Internal Revenue Service, and various state and local governments
- Non-Profit: Lutheran Social Services, United Way, Make-a-Wish, Unity Point Health
Students in the CBPA are encouraged to hold internships and participate in networking events throughout their college career. Drake offers many tools to students to help them find — and obtain — internships and jobs, including a dedicated career counselor within CBPA that can help with resume building and interviewing skills. Each year, the CBPA hosts an annual Business and Technology Career Fair, which brings major employers to Drake’s campus to meet with students.
The requirements to sit for the CPA exam vary by state, so close communication with your advisor is needed to ensure you meet the state requirements for sitting for the exam outside of Iowa; however, all students are eligible to sit for the exam in Iowa upon completing the accounting major requirements.
To become licensed as a CPA, there is a national requirement to complete 150 hours of college study, which means that you will need an additional 30 above the 120 minimum hours to complete your undergraduate degree at Drake. We recommend that you complete your Master of Accounting at Drake to meet this additional education requirement because the course work is aimed at preparing you for the CPA exam, and it leads to a higher degree that will enhance your promotion opportunities in the future.
Drake offers an accelerated Master of Accounting program that allows you to begin taking master level courses during your senior year. With careful planning, both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees can be completed in as little as four and one-half years. You can discuss other options of meeting the 150-hour requirement with your advisor.
DEGREE OPTIONS AND REQUIREMENTS
Required major courses: Intermediate Financial Accounting, Accounting Systems, Intermediate and Advanced Managerial Accounting, Individual Taxation, Principles of Auditing, and Principles of Macroeconomics
Elective courses: Advanced Financial Reporting, Corporate Taxation, Advanced IT Apps for Business, Database Management, Business Organization Law, and Advanced Business Law (Uniform Commercial Code, Bankruptcy, Estates and Trusts)
For a comprehensive list of courses required for Accounting offered by the College of Business and Public Administration, visit this page.
- Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (B.S.B.A.) with a major in Accounting
- Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (B.S.B.A.) with a joint major in Accounting and Finance
- Accounting Minor (available to all Drake students)
- Master of Accounting (MAcc)
FIND OUT MORE
We love talking about the great things happening at Drake, but nothing beats a visit to campus. Let us know you're coming, and we'll arrange for you to meet professors, sit in on a class, or just hang out with current students.