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CTCPA Launches Pipeline Committee to Cultivate Interest in the Profession and Support Tomorrow's CPAs on Their Career Paths

August 25, 2023

New initiatives will be supported by individuals across the CTCPA membership. Looking for member engagement!

The competition for accounting and finance talent continues to be fierce, and the number of new CPAs continues to decline both in our state and across the country. A new Pipeline Committee led by CTCPA Past President Brian Reilly is working to proactively address these issues.  

Brian, along with CTCPA Executive Director and CEO Bonnie Stewart, brought together an inaugural group of members this summer for initial discussions. Members ranged from students at Connecticut universities to professionals with education, business and industry, and public accounting backgrounds.

Committee members broke down issues and challenges and then identified opportunities to cultivate student interest in the profession and support future CPAs throughout their path to the career.

Key target areas have been identified.

The group created a focused approach to fill the pipeline through four key target areas. We should acknowledge this is a long-term initiative that will require member support and persistence.

Promoting the Value of the CPA Career Path. We need to better showcase the opportunities the CPA career path offers as well as the countless possibilities to forge a unique path in almost any industry or interest area. We all see the value, but how can we create this passion for the next generation? 

High School Outreach. We need to inform high school and perhaps even middle school students on the benefits of majoring in accounting and the great opportunities available in the CPA career path. This will include member involvement at career fairs, career days, and in classroom speaking engagements, as well as providing teachers and guidance counselors with the resources they need to support and encourage the CPA path.  

Higher Education Career Awareness and Support. Work at the college and university level will be multi-pronged. We need to support current accounting majors as they work to cross the finish line for CPA certification, as well as reaching out to students who are undecided to make sure they are aware of CPA career opportunities. This initiative will also work with professors and career centers to attract students and ensure they are aware of available internships, financial support, and other resources.

Addressing Issues of Affordability. CPA certification requires 150 hours of education – about 30 extra credit hours, which usually translates to an extra year of college. We need to identify ways that community colleges, the state university system, and others (i.e., public accounting firms and other employers) can offer creative solutions to help address issues of affordability and time. This group will also work to better promote scholarship opportunities from the CTCPA Accounting Scholarship Foundation and other organizations supporting the profession.

The path forward hinges on member support.

Each of the key target areas above will be championed by a subcommittee led by a chair or co-chairs. The Pipeline Committee is actively seeking members to become involved in each subcommittee.  

“We will be seeking support from the membership at large to be our ‘boots on the ground' and help carry out these initiatives once outreach begins,” Brian explained. “Whether you can help us get the right contacts in schools or colleges, take on career fair duty, participate in speaking engagements, or provide coaching sessions to small groups or individuals, there will be a large need and many ways to help out.”

Initial timeframe and goals.

Once the leaders of these subcommittees are finalized, each group will work with volunteer members to develop specific actions and goals as well as identify what tools and additional support they'll need to accomplish these goals. Subcommittee meetings are targeted to begin in late October or early November.

“While we expect to have our initial outreach up and running by early 2024, this will be an ongoing, long-term effort,” Brian said. “Working to nurture the next generation of students and young professionals and share our passion will take time before we truly see the results of these efforts. We can't afford to wait any longer, and the benefits will be well worth the investment.”

Interested in helping? Please let us know!

If you're interested in taking on a leadership role or serving as a member of one of our subcommittees, please reach out to Alyssa Boerenko at and let her 
know which key target area(s) most interest you.

Thank you to the following inaugural Pipeline Committee members: 


Brian Reilly, Chair

Michelle Allen

Mark Caplan

Christian Chlebowski
UConn student

Jennifer Hockenhull
Adult Congenital Heart Association

Michael Jordan

Marie Kulesza
Central Connecticut State University

Daniel Kusaila
Crowe LLP

Chaitra Varshin Varshini Sri
Central Connecticut State University student

Noelle Taddei
Career Advocate/Coach

John Turgeon