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SUNY Plattsburgh Student Awarded $10,000 Scholarship

samantha jardine SUNY Plattsburgh online student Samantha Jardine’s $10,000 scholarship award came as a surprise to her.

“I was in complete shock and am so extremely grateful and proud,” Jardine said.

Jardine is the first SUNY Plattsburgh student to receive the scholarship from the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, said Dr. Jason Lee, distinguished teaching professor and accounting chair.

Congress created the PCAOB to supervise audits of public companies. The scholarship funds come from the fines generated by organizations found to have violated the law.

It is the first year the PCAOB selected SUNY Plattsburgh as one of its nominating institutions based on the reputation of its Association for the Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) accredited School of Business and Economics.

“We certainly look forward to the same generous support from the PCAOB’s funding in the future,” Lee said.

‘Nurturing Professors’

Jardine, a native of Holbrook, N.Y., on Long Island, is dual majoring in accounting and business administration with a minor in forensic accounting.

“I have been very fortunate to have had such wonderful and nurturing professors during my journey here at Plattsburgh so far,” Jardine said. “I’m a fully online student, so it can be hard to feel that sense of belonging and community, but my professors so far have been amazing.”

Balancing School and Family

In addition to her role as a full-time student, Jardine is a full-time parent to two young sons.

“I returned to college after having my youngest son after a 10-year hiatus, and I put everything I had into my schoolwork,” she said. “I put 110 percent into everything I do, and I work very hard and take my grades very seriously.”

jason leeLee is Jardine’s adviser and has also taught her in two intermediate accounting classes.

Impartial Nomination Process

“She frequently attends Zoom office hours, which has helped me to get to know her better. I even had the opportunity to meet her family a few times on Zoom tutoring sessions,” Lee said.

Lee is one member of a three-faculty member committee that nominated Jardine for the scholarship.

“Because this is an essential scholarship with a sizeable award amount of $10,000, the accounting department has developed a rigorous selection process to ensure fairness,” Lee said.

The selection process was intentional and included a rubric, Lee said. Crucially, the committee used a nominating process that used only each student’s credentials and not their names in the evaluation process, he said.

“After implementing PCAOB’s rigorous review, Samantha’s name appeared at the top of each committee member’s list of candidates,” Lee said. “She is well deserved to receive this scholarship.”

Flexible 100 Percent Online Program

Lee said the university’s online accounting program is an excellent option for many busy adult learners like Jardine looking for a career change or promotion while maintaining their work, family and personal lives.

“They can learn anywhere and anytime from our well-designed and carefully crafted asynchronous classes and earn a B.S. in accounting supported by high-quality AACSB-accredited business school at an affordable cost,” he said.

Graduates are eligible to obtain their CPA licenses, something Jardine said she plans to do after she graduates in December 2024 before looking for work at a Manhattan firm or the IRS.

Among the benefits, “online accounting program students receive personalized care and attention from our online program coordinator, student success coach, academic advisers and the accounting department chairs,” Lee said.

‘In Demand Graduates’

Many of the university’s recent online accounting program graduates received job offers from large and medium size CPA firms — including the Big Four: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG and PwC — business organizations like IBM and government agencies like the New York State Comptroller’s Office, he said.

Lee said accounting remains a field with many job opportunities.

“A nationwide shortage of accountants has resulted in salary increases in sign-on bonuses in 2022 and 2023,” he said. “The most significant salary increases has been observed for entry-level positions.

— Story by Assistant Director of Communications Felicia Krieg

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