Gaining a Professional Edge with AICPA Membership Benefits
I take great pride in being a CPA, and I know you do too. Earning the credential is something that gives us tremendous confidence and opportunities in our professional lives. The self-assurance comes from having passed the rigorous CPA exam and maintaining lifelong learning. The endless possibilities stem from our experience, expertise and skills that are highly regarded and necessary in any organization.
Of course, I am able to stay current and knowledgeable about both professional and technical issues through my membership in the AICPA. As fellow members, you know the Institute gives us a professional edge by providing 24/7 access to trusted information and reliable tools. In an increasingly complicated and competitive business world, it’s good to know that I can turn to the AICPA to tap into the information I need when and where I need it.
In addition to technical information, I rely on many other member benefits that make my work more efficient or more profitable. They also may save my firm, my family or me money and some members find the discounts more than pay for membership. Below are some of the member benefits I’ve used:
- Member communities and interest areas to help seize new practice opportunities and meet my clients’ growing needs.
- The Journal of Accountancy, CPA Letter Daily, News Update and many other member publications that spotlight news in any area of interest to me or my staff, keeping us informed.
- Volunteer opportunities that have enriched my life, enabling me to start out many years ago as a first-time committee member and eventually become the Institute’s chairman of the board. Career resources will help you grow your career and perhaps become a leader of your company or firm.
- Deep discounts on CPE, webcasts and other educational opportunities. In addition, discounts on AICPA conference registration help members stay on the cutting edge of critical issues and provide for networking and sharing experiences with other CPAs.
- The AICPA Member Discount Program offers savings on dozens of products and services, including insurance, credit cards, practice financing, technology tools, business solutions, travel and CPA-branded products.
- The opportunity to earn professional distinction in specialized areas, such as the CGMA designation for management accounting, which I have. Other specializations are in personal financial planning, forensic accounting, business valuation and information technology.
Given the level of regulation involved in our profession’s services, having an active advocacy role to protect the public and the profession is critically important. The AICPA is a significant voice and resource on legislative, regulatory and public policy issues. We’ve achieved many successes that have helped the profession avoid unnecessary or duplicative regulation and enabled us to better serve our clients or employers.
I first decided on my career goal when a CPA named Tony moved in across the street from my family’s home in blue-collar Revere, Massachusetts. The whole neighborhood admired him because he wore a suit, drove a nice car and had only one job. Even at 12 or 13, I could see being a CPA meant having a different life. It enabled me to achieve the American Dream.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a CPA? Go to the Why I Became a CPA webpage and share your inspiration for becoming a CPA. Let us know what your CPA credential has done for you. In my mind, there’s no doubt that however you define success, being a CPA – and tapping into the resources of the AICPA and being connected to the whole profession – can help you achieve it.
Richard J. Caturano, CPA, CGMA, Chairman of the Board of Directors, American Institute of CPAs.