Orange Accounting News 2020-21

Joe Comprix

I am sure that the last year is one that we will all remember. Through it all, our students, faculty and staff have done a remarkable job keeping everything moving forward. The first step was that we were able to get all of our courses moved online in a short time-frame in the spring of 2020. 

For the fall of 2020, we were able to transition to hybrid courses (with both online and in-person components), as well. Over the 2020-21 academic year, we offered more than 75% of our courses with an in-person component. This took a huge effort from our faculty and staff (particularly the folks in IT). Of course, we were all concerned that our students wouldn’t be as engaged, but they did a great job showing up to classes (online or in-person) and office hours on Zoom (I still remember when none of us knew what that was). All of us would like to congratulate our new graduates of the Class of 2021. It is terrific that we were able to have our students attend graduation this year. I can honestly say that this is a class of students that we won’t forget but that we all wish we had more time with.

Despite all of the turmoil last year, we managed to accomplish quite a bit. First, we made a critical hire. One of our Ph.D. graduates, Willie Reddic, is coming back as an associate professor with tenure. Reddic’s hire will fill a critical need for us, as he teaches analytics for accounting. Second, our students did well in the job market. Placement was near normal, which, given all that was going on at that time, is a big accomplishment. Third, we received state approval for changes to the curriculum for our master’s degree in accounting program. The most important part of this is that we are adding analytics courses to the requirements to keep up with the changing needs of the profession. Finally, our team in the Deloitte FanTAXtic Tax Case Competition placed third nationally, and our Beta Alpha Psi chapter was recognized as a Superior Chapter (In both cases, great job Professor Wagner and students!).

Sadly, Mo Onsi, who was a long-serving faculty member and former chair of the department, passed away. I spoke to many who knew Mo and everyone liked him and respected his accomplishments. I had the pleasure of meeting him, and I feel the same way. 

I really appreciate our students, alumni, faculty, staff and the members of our advisory board for their efforts over the past year. It has been great to see everyone pitching in to get us through a difficult time. I also appreciate the recruiters who are engaging our students and helping them navigate the first steps of their careers. 

Everyone has done a lot this year, but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Professor of Accounting Practice MaryAnn Monforte. She taught extra classes in both spring and fall, so that all of our introductory accounting classes could have an in-person component. In addition, she organized online events for our Accounting Stars, where they could interact with people from the industry—even though this year’s get togethers were virtual (Read more about this later in the newsletter). Overall, she put in a lot of effort, and it was a big win for our students!

Finally, this fall, we are planning to be back to normal with in-person classes. I know we are all looking forward to that. Go Orange!

Joseph Comprix
Professor of Accounting
Chair, Joseph I. Lubin School of Accounting

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