Breaking Barriers: 

Legislation Proposes Adding Accounting as STEM, Closing the Perception Gap

Technology has reshaped the day-to-day responsibilities of accountants so much so that professionals are not just learning and leveraging cutting-edge technology, but developing and innovating technology to help clients make informed decisions and improve services. But ask a typical high school student what accountants do and it is clear there is a gap between perception and reality.

Most younger people are not aware that digital technology tools are automating and improving many old accounting tasks, opening up avenues for more creative work such as data analysis, advising on business decisions, and hunting down fraud. That perception problem is contributing to a decline of accounting graduates as well as the lack of diversity in the pipeline.

The profession believes that accountants who are reflective and inclusive of the communities they serve are better positioned to solve complex issues facing clients and respond to the evolving public interest. While there has been progress, more work needs to be done to increase racial and ethnic diversity in the accounting profession pipeline.

We need to help younger people considering career paths understand that accounting and technology are intricately linked — and that a profession that requires a mastery of digital technologies will set you up to be successful in many different fields.

Designating accounting as STEM at the K-12 level should increase diverse student engagement with the accounting profession and signal to the public markets that the accounting profession is qualified to assess the technological world businesses are in today.

Click here to learn more about this pioneering legislation




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