ambling State University student members of the National Association of Black Accountants, Inc. (NABA), accompanied by Dr. Fred Osadebe and Melanie C. Thomas, participated in “Day with NABA” activities.
This annual event is an informational workshop with several different sessions through which professionals interact with students. Students met with professionals from the Big Four accounting firms and some of the nation’s top finance firms and oil refineries such as AXA Advisors and ConocoPhillips.
Students began their day by having breakfast and networking with professionals.
Students met the chair of the NABA board of directors, Felicia Farrar, who has been a member of the NABA for over 20 years.
Farrar gave the students information that she felt they needed to know to gain employment, during one of the country’s notable financial down turns.
Information provided by Farrar and other panel members focused on obtaining of CPA certification.
They said CPA certification is vital to the success of not only African American accountants but all accountants if they choose to work in the corporate accounting profession depending on their specialty.
It was also made clear that all students leaving college for new industries and governmental endeavors should be prepared to take constructive criticism, diversify relationships within the corporate environment, identify a mentor, avoid office politics and excessive networking and make sure that they are better than the non-minorities.
Also, members of the Houston Professional Chapter of NABA held a number of small informational sessions, which made the students look at their plans for the future and either press on in the path set, or set in motion new plans that will benefit them better in the long run.
During one of the sessions the students had a chance to speak with Carmen Herrera, a Financial Consultant at AXA Advisors, LLC, who gave insight into the importance of a financial advisor in the creation of wealth and other financial planning.
Former GSU NABA member Eric Moses spoke about navigating a career in corporate America.
Other presenters included
Dominique Drake, Ernst &
Young; Devin Jones, ConocoPhillips; William North III., Deloitte; Candace Elliot and Felicia Walden, KPMG; and Clarissa Anderson, PriceWaterhouseCoopers.
“This event provides an avenue for student members to interact and network with professionals and educate themselves with current trends in corporate America and build relationships,” said North.
As the day came to an end, the professional chapter treated the students to Dave and Busters, where students had a chance to speak with the professionals on a one-on-one basis.
This outing gave the students an opportunity to form relationships with the professionals and gave the professionals a chance to see the real personalities of the students.
This summer the members will attend the NABA national convention to be hosted in Houston June 15-19.
Yanick Anagho contributed to this story.