High School - ACAP


What is ACAP?
ACAP stands for the Accounting Careers Awareness Program. The primary objective of ACAP is to increase the number of high school students from under represented ethnic groups that attend college and major in accounting or finance. Through ACAP’s efforts, students receive educational enrichment experiences and practical help needed for college preparation and a career in accounting or finance.

ACAP Goals
The Accounting Career Awareness Program goals are:
  • To increase the number of high school students from under represented ethnic groups that attend college and major in accounting or finance,
  • To increase college enrollment of these particular ethnic groups, and
  • To provide a pipeline program for directing these students to the accounting profession.

To achieve these goals ACAP:
  1. Sponsors a one-week residency program during the summer at a local college or university.
  2. Provides students the opportunity to:
    • attend classes on careers in accounting and business, personal development, and college preparation.
    • our local companies and CPA firms; and
    • invite their parent(s) or guardian(s) to a recognition of their completion of the program.
  3. Maintains ongoing contact with students through our alumni programs which monitor their academic progress and personal development.

ACAP is a nonprofit organization, currently registered as an IRS section 501c (3) corporation. Development of the ACAP idea began in 1980, when the National Association of Black Accountants, Inc. (NABA) became concerned about the small proportion of minorities entering the accounting field from under-represented minority groups. Recognizing that preparation for a business career should begin in the early years of junior and senior high school, the Seattle Chapter, under the direction of Ronald Leverette, designed a pilot program that would encourage minority students to take the college preparatory courses they would need to major in accounting and other fields of business. With the assistance of many Seattle area based businesses and public accounting firms, the pilot program was established. To ensure that the program’s goals were achieved, ACAP formed an Executive Committee comprising business executives from the private and public sectors, academia and NABA representatives. This partnership model, bringing together corporate resources with NABA and other key professionals forming an active Advisory Board (or Executive Committee), and a supportive academic institution has proven successful over the past three decades.

ACAP-based programs are operating throughout the United States including Arkansas, California, Georgia, Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Washington.

The Learning Experience
ACAP fosters motivation and achievement. The program helps instill new attitudes in students, challenging them to set high goals and strive for success. Courses include practical business applications such as accounting, financial statement analysis and computers, as well as personal development topics such as goal setting, networking, personal budgeting and communications skills. Evening study sessions reinforce messages conveyed during each day’s classes. Throughout the residency, the instructors and ACAP Advisory Board members serve as important role models. In addition to the insight gained through the coursework, students learn by example that success is within their reach. Field trips to corporations and accounting firms provide first-hand exposure to the business world and allow students to network with successful minorities.

The ACAP model works! Surveys consistently indicate that most ACAP alumni go on to college, and a large majority study accounting or business.

The Commitment-Both Public and Private
Corporations and accounting firms demonstrate their ongoing commitment to ACAP with more than monetary donations; they make contributions of human resources as well.  Public accounting firms of all sizes provide funding and play instrumental roles in program development. The program has also generated the interest and support of a number of key corporate sponsors. In addition to financial support, supporters have direct access to the Executive Committee and host field trips during ACAP residency sessions or alumni events.

The growing number of qualified student applicants increases each year making it imperative that ACAP sponsorship funds increase as well.

ACAP continues to expand to make a more meaningful impact in the marketplace. The long term goal is to increase the number of residency sites to help more students across the the United States and especially in the Eastern Region. ACAP also needs support to reach more schools and to expand alumni programs to provide academic and career guidance to older alumni facing a challenging work environment.

For more information on the NABA ACAP Programs in the Eastern Region, please email us at info@nabaer.org.