Canada is in critical need of skilled and professional workers to sustain and build our economy. Due to an aging population and a declining birth rate, by 2011 immigrants will account for all new growth in the labor force. The need is felt particularly in the field of accounting where, over the past ten years there has occurred an enormous increase in accounting standards to protect the public from corporate fraud and many changes to standards in a move toward global harmonization of accounting standards.
International post-secondary students (IPSS) are a great resource, since they already have Canadian credentials (a degree from an accredited Canadian post secondary institution) and exposure to Canadian culture. Yet many IPSSs struggle to find jobs in their field. A coordinated plan to assist IPSSs attain Canadian professional accounting designations would not only benefit our economy, but also stimulate our post secondary education system since it would encourage more international students to come to Canada for education.
My experience as a professor, academic advisor for accounting students and organizer of accounting career fairs has opened my eyes to the continued challenges facing IPSSs when seeking a Chartered Accounting (CA) designation. For this reason I embarked on a study interviewing IPSSs and Canadian Post-secondary students (CPSSs) planning to become Canadian CA.s.
This study examines the challenges that IPSSs face in their efforts to become CAs in BC, recent improvements in recruiting practices of CA firms and in the immigration process and then provides recommendations to CA firms and IPSSs.
|Keywords:||Accounting, Chartered Accounting Designation, Diversity Initiatives, Integration, International Post-secondary Students|
Associate Professor of Accounting, School of Business, Trinity Western University, Langley, British Columbia, Canada
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