North Carolina State University’s Jenkins Master of Accounting (MAC) program is celebrating success this year with both its 25th anniversary and the launch of its new Online MAC platform in Fall 2019.
The Jenkins Online MAC Program, offered in the NC State Poole College of Management, provides students the flexibility to pursue a MAC degree online, meeting the needs of working professionals, in particular.
The application period is still open for the online MAC program, which was created in response to growing demand for both flexible learning options and an increased call to meet the needs of lifelong learners.
With lifelong learning becoming the norm in the professional world, NC State’s online MAC option means professionals can now pursue their degree while continuing their career and do so on a timeline that works for them, said Scott Showalter, director of the Jenkins MAC Program.
“The Jenkins Online MAC Program is designed for the professional whose undergraduate degree was not in accounting or has an undergraduate degree in accounting and needs a graduate degree to advance in their career,” Showalter said. “The online format allows them to pursue the graduate degree without putting their family life or career on hold.”
The anticipated timeframe for an online student to complete their degree is expected to average 18 to 36 months, with the shortest time being 12 months and the longest, six years, said Jay Arrington, associate director of admissions for the Jenkins MAC Program in the Poole College of Management.
Arrington points to a range of individuals who will benefit from the online program option, such as working professionals who might be mid-level and considering switching careers, seasoned professionals that need an advanced degree to move to the next level in their career, and others who may want or need to earn their degree from afar, such as military stationed overseas.
The Jenkins MAC program has always been willing to develop new ideas to benefit the students, and this online format is no exception, Arrington said. Those enrolling in the online program can expect the same quality faculty, curriculum and experience even though they’re not on campus.
The online course content is primarily asynchronous, including video of actual classes, providing an optimal experience for students while also allowing students to work at their own pace at any time of the day or night, he said.
Matt Ray, MAC ’19, took some of the existing online sections while pursuing his MAC and said access to in-class recordings felt like the same experience he’d have in the classroom.
Ray said that one of the benefits of the online format was that, “I was able to slow down, pause, and re-watch the lectures if necessary, so that I could better understand the material.”
The online MAC experience will afford students the opportunity to engage with their classmates, interact with faculty, build lasting connections and a strong network, all while receiving top quality education that will help prepare working professionals for their next chapter in their career and life. Faculty members are available virtually, by phone, or in person if students are located in or near NC State’s Raleigh, NC campus.
Online MAC students can also select elective courses that meet their needs –– and may choose a concentration in enterprise risk management, tax strategy, or information technology. Students can expect the program to fully prepare them for the CPA exam. The Jenkins MAC CPA exam first-time pass rate is consistently higher than the national average.
Arrington points out that accounting is the language of business, and this new online MAC program option will be another tool to ensure students are more marketable in the workplace.
“Every type of business needs accountants or somebody with accounting knowledge,” he said. “Those who want to get into public accounting, work for top Fortune 500 corporations, or start a business will have the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful based on the education they’ll receive with the Jenkins Online MAC.”
As the accounting world continues to be impacted by rapid change in areas such as analytics, risk management and artificial intelligence, Arrington said students can expect the online program to keep pace, providing skills and information that will be viable in today’s marketplace.
The online MAC program will continue to evolve in the coming years, Arrington said. While the curriculum will continue to mirror the on campus program, faculty and staff are exploring ways to enhance areas such as student orientation and personalized career consulting among others, he said.
The NC State Jenkins Online MAC Program is still open for admission for Fall 2019, with a July 26 admissions deadline, Arrington said. Prospective students can look through the Jenkins MAC website for more information, and to learn more about the curriculum, electives, and concentration options, he said. GMAT waivers are also available for applicants that qualify in the admissions process, he added.
With a manageable workload and competitive tuition, Arrington said the ROI on the NC State online MAC program is high. Just like the on campus format, in-state and out-of-state tuition options will apply.
“One of the things that the Jenkins Online MAC program wants to provide to all students, whether on-campus or online, is that feeling of being one big family with Wolfpack pride working together for a common goal, where we can always count on one another,” he said.
Jay Arrington is available to answer questions at Jay_Arrington@ncsu.edu.
This story was written for the Poole College of Management by Lea Hart.