In today’s increasingly complex business landscape, the field of accounting is constantly evolving, adapting to new technologies, standards, tax codes, and laws. While the Master of Science in Accounting offered by the Department of Business at Rhodes is designed to support entry and advancement in professional accounting, the program also prepares students for careers in a wide range of business environments and careers, including investment banking, financial consulting, and corporate work.
The majority of candidates can fulfill the requirements of the degree in two four-course semesters; a complete listing of courses and the degree requirements of the program can be found in the College Catalogue. All applicants must have an earned baccalaureate from an accredited institution before being admitted into the program; in addition, all non-Rhodes applicants are required to take the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT).
To apply to the M.S. in Accounting Program, complete the APPLICATION.
Tuition for the Master of Science in Accounting for 2022-2023 is set at $52,000. All applicants are automatically considered for a departmental scholarship with no additional forms required to be filed. The average scholarship for 2021-2022 was $21,200.
The tuition charges, regulations for payment and withdrawal, activity fees, and special fees and deposits for the M.S. in Accounting are the same as for the undergraduate program at Rhodes. Room charges and policies are also the same as those for the undergraduate programs; however, on-campus rooms will be made available to graduate students only after all undergraduate demand has been satisfied.
Founded at Rhodes in 1993, the Master of Science in Accounting program has proven to be extremely successful. The program boasts a 100 percent job placement rate for students following graduation, with about 75 percent going to the Big Four firms (Deloitte & Touche, Ernst & Young, KPMG, and PricewaterhouseCoopers) and the rest joining regional or local firms.
Dr. Pam Church, the program’s director for more than 25 years before her retirement in 2021, credits this incredible success rate to accounting students at Rhodes taking interdisciplinary courses, both in the undergraduate and graduate programs. This means that on top of a thorough accounting education emphasizing both theoretical and technical elements, students also receive an interdisciplinary teaching of business.
“Rhodes students stand apart from other new hires,” says Church, “because they have a strong liberal arts background and can communicate in oral and written forms, as well as think critically and analyze thoroughly.” The combination of all these attributes is what attracts employers to the program.
The program boasts a 100% job placement rate following graduation, with about 75% going to Big Four firms.
Rhodes’ Department of Business has a very strong internship program, which further helps students become good candidates for post-graduate jobs. More than 80 percent of business students have some type of work experience in conjunction with their undergraduate degree, whether paid or unpaid, allowing students to get hands-on experience in a field they are interested in pursuing. Internships also allow employers to interact with Rhodes students, which can lead employers to return to Rhodes for full-time hires.
The M.S. in Accounting program averages around 22 students a year, most of whom are staying at Rhodes for a fifth year in order to pursue the degree. Church says that this is partly due to the fact that accounting is a stable career even in uncertain economic times, but is also due to the program’s reputation and successful placement rate.
But beyond job placement, students develop a network with one another and faculty members that is just as fulfilling as the promise of getting hired. Notes Church, “Alumni often tell the faculty that they have developed supportive relationships in the program that continue for many years beyond graduation.”
Each year, Rhodes holds a highly successful Meet the Firms event, with accounting firms and companies with accounting departments invited to meet M.S. students and accounting upperclassmen in preparation for interviews for internships and jobs. The event annually attracts up to 20 national, regional, and local companies and their representatives to campus.
Upon Church's retirement, Dr. Wendy J. Bailey, associate professor of accounting, was named director of the M.S. in Accounting Program.