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What can ACIS offer you?

The Opportunity to Make a Difference

Accounting is often referred to as the “Language of Business”.  A bachelor’s degree from the Department of Accounting and Information Systems (ACIS) is comprised of courses that help students learn this language, how a business works, and how business decisions impact the financial well-being of the business and its stakeholders.  Accountants are often referred to as bean counters, but information systems do the bulk of the bean counting.  Accountants help ensure those systems and related business processes include the proper controls to produce accurate and timely financial information.  Accountants support business decision-making and problem solving by explaining what the numbers mean.  Accountants investigate financial results to identify fraud and other anomalies.  Accountants evaluate business performance and help develop strategies for improvement.  Accountants help other business professionals make financially sound decisions.

Alumnus Shirley Edwards participates in 2018 PAC Meeting.

High Quality Internships in a Dynamic Profession

Advancements in big data and business analytic tools have increased the demand for students with technical skills who are well versed in the language of business.  ACIS has a long history of incorporating evolving technologies into the program.  Through the ACIS Advisory Board, the major has close partnerships with industry leaders providing insight into the current technology demands of the market as well as high quality internship and networking opportunities.

Sarah Stein teaching ACIS 4414

Diverse Career Opportunities

An ACIS major offers graduates an opportunity to forge their own path as accounting is essential to every organization:  large corporations, small businesses, government and non-profit agencies.  Accountants can work locally, regionally or internationally providing general accounting services or services tailored to a specific industry.  Accounting specialties are varied and growing:  Financial, Managerial, Cost, Tax, Governmental, Non-profit, Forensic, International, Consulting & Advisory, Accounting Information Systems, Audit & Assurance, Business Valuation, Financial Planning, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG).  The accounting profession actively encourages and promotes diversity and inclusion reflective of the diverse communities accountants serve.  With a degree in ACIS, you can make the positive impact you choose whether that is helping organizations achieve their goals, informing stakeholders, improving the human condition, protecting the public interest or fighting fraud and other white-collar crimes.

An ACIS 5444 students ask a question about her classmates' presentation.

Master's Degree Options

We also offer a Master’s degree in accounting and information systems as well as a special program for our ACIS Seniors, referred to as our 152-Hour Program.  This Program combines undergraduate and graduate course work, enabling students to graduate with a bachelor’s and master’s degree in ACIS in 5 years or less.  Being in the 152-Hour Program is extremely beneficial, resulting in lower tuition as students pay undergraduate tuition rates for graduate level courses taken as a Senior as well as a more manageable course load as a graduate student.  152-Hour students become graduate students in our Master of Accounting and Information Systems or MACIS Program upon graduation with their bachelor’s degree.

Our MACIS Program is open to students with a bachelor’s degree in any discipline.  The benefits of ultimately earning a Master’s degree are tremendous.  They include greater job opportunities and higher compensation over time.  Additionally, under our MACIS Program, we offer 5 Options, all of which meet the educational requirements for CPA licensure in Virginia.  The 5 Options are Accounting Analytics, Audit, Financial Services, Information Systems, and Tax.  We are also very proud to be a participant in KPMG’s Master of Accounting with Data and Analytics Program, a program that provides our students and faculty with significant educational benefits.  Our MACIS Program remains on the leading edge and we are confident that earning a Master's degree in ACIS will set students up for success in the profession and on the CPA Exam. 

Kathy, Jung and Austin at the Master's Pizza Party 2018

The Most Scholarhips in Pamplin

ACIS alumni are among the most actively engaged within the university and are also among the most generous contributors. Due to the generosity of our alumni and friends, ACIS awards more student scholarships than any Pamplin Department. We provide more than 100 students with scholarships that distribute over $370,000 each year.  The scholarships are awarded to all levels of students, including incoming first-year students, who have declared ACIS as their primary major.    

ACIS Alumni Tailgate

Consistently High Demand for ACIS Graduates

ACIS job placement rates are consistently among the highest in Pamplin and the University.  Accounting is a stable profession as evidenced by high placement rates even in times of economic downturn.  ACIS graduates are sought after by all four of the largest international public accounting firms, as well as other top national and regional firms, the government and private industry.  The ACIS major at Virginia Tech prepares students to sit for the CPA exam and also aids students in preparing for the CMA (managerial) and CISA (information systems) designations.  The median starting salary of VT’s ACIS graduates is $16,000 higher than the national average of all Accounting Bachelor’s degree recipients.  ACIS alumni advance to top executive positions of accounting firms, large corporations and government organizations.