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Would New York Ever Require a Master’s Degree to Become a CPA?

What’s this, now? Two CPA exam questions in one week? Must be our lucky day! If you have a question, or just need to vent, or want to compliment me on my hair, get in touch and we’ll do our best not to screw your life up.

Hey Adrienne,

Is it true the NY is considering mandating a Master’s Degree to sit or be eligible for the CPA?

I graduated in December of 2010. I worked for a Big 4 for close to 3 years and have escaped to a 9-5 working in Internal Audit. I meet the 150 credit requirement.  Today, I had lunch with my colleague who mentioned that he heard that NY is considering requiring a Master’s Degree soon to be eligible to qualify for the cpa? I have pushed off taking the exam for several years now and finally am motivated to study and pass the exam. I still haven’t submitted any forms to New York State for Licensure or submitted an Application to Nasba. I was going to wait until I felt I was at least halfway ready to take one of the exams… Please let me know if you heard of anything and perhaps could advise if I should apply now so that I could at least be grand fathered in.


Considering New York City is my home away from home (OK, that’s a lie, I just rescue cats there), you’d think I would know someone over at the state board. In lieu of a source on the inside, I asked my AWeb counterpart Richard — who used to work for the NYSSCPA — if he’d heard anything. He hadn’t.

So I tweeted the society; surely they would know if there were anything to know.

Okay, so it’s safe to say that New York won’t be requiring a Master’s to become a CPA any time soon but Francine McKenna caught wind of us pestering the society and gave us her $0.02 on mandatory Master’s degrees:

That’s interesting. As we know, the words “elite” and “accountant” parted ways some time ago but could it be that the Big 4 are laying the groundwork to change all that.

Do we need to talk about this?