UNL School of Accountancy graduate student Taylor Pugh has been awarded the 2011 FSA (Federation of Schools of Accountancy) Student Award. The award was announced at the Beta Alpha Psi Spring Banquet held at Beacon Hills in Lincoln on April 27. Pugh will be receiving her MPA in accountancy during this May's graduation ceremony.
Pugh, who also earned her undergraduate degree in accountancy from UNL, said it was an honor to receive the award which is voted on by graduate faculty. Although Pugh has excelled in her accounting classes she originally came to UNL from Johnson, Nebraska without a clear idea of what program she would take.
“I started in arts and sciences and my sophomore year transferred over to business and took the introductory accounting courses,” said Pugh. “I wasn’t thinking that it was anything that I would be interested in but then I took Accounting 201 and 202 through the honors program. I was pretty good at it and I liked it so I decided to pursue that route. I graduated in May 2010 and started the masters program the same year in the summer. It’s all went really fast."
Pugh plans on taking the CPA exam over the summer and then will start her professional career in accountancy working in Omaha at Lutz and Company, PC which is a public accounting firm.
“I interned there two summers ago. I was lucky to be offered a job right after that so I’ve known for a couple years where I’ll be working.
“The reason that I decided to get my masters in accounting was because for the CPA exam you have to have 150 credit hours. The masters program provides an easy way to get those hours because you have to take so many accounting classes. I got six hours of master’s credit when I was an undergrad which helped to make the process a lot faster.”
Although Pugh is from a small Nebraska town she found it relatively easy to adjust to life at UNL.
“Coming from a small town I was kind of worried because UNL is a big campus and my high school class had 21 students. It was kind of overwhelming at first but getting into your specific program, and especially accounting now that I’ve been in it a few years, you get to know the professors and you get to have a closer relationship with them than you might think at a large university.
“I had a chance to work with Dr. Janice Lawrence on some research for a UCARE project when I was an undergrad. We looked at the integration of ethics in the curriculum at CBA as to whether the professors are teaching ethics in their classes and if so how much and what modes of teaching do they use. That was really interesting.”
Pugh has also served as President of Beta Alpha Psi student organization which gives accounting students the chance to further their professional development through a variety of events throughout the school year.
Paul Shoemaker, the chair of the UNL School of Accountancy, informed Pugh that she was being awarded the 2011 annual FSA Student Award and detailed the significance of the FSA and the honor.
“The FSA is an organization of accredited graduate programs in accounting,” said Shoemaker. “The UNL School of Accountancy has been separately accredited since 1984 and is a full-fledged and active member of the FSA. Currently, there are 108 full member schools and 46 affiliate schools in the FSA. Additionally, several of the largest public accounting firms in the United States, many state societies of CPAs, and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants are associate members. One FSA Student Award is given annually to the outstanding Master of Accountancy student at each member school."
Shoemaker concluded by congratulating Pugh as the 2011 winner of the FSA Student Award.