Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants

Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants

The Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants (WICPA) is a professional association representing the certified public accountant (CPA) profession in Wisconsin. Founded more than a century ago (in 1905), WICPA has more than 8,000 members and serves as the premier professional organization of CPAs, CPA candidates and accounting students. WICPA members work in public accounting, business and industry, not-for-profit, government and education. WICPA aims to promote the CPA designation by encouraging students and CPA candidates to take the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination and to provide support and services for CPAs from their entry into the workforce through retirement.

Mission

The WICPA is a professional association that strives to serve its members, assure the public, and maintain the integrity of the accounting profession through the provision of continuing education, peer review and community service opportunities; involvement in the legislative process; and communication with the public through the print and broadcast media.

Goals

The WICPA has three goals:
* To be recognized as the resource and agent for knowledge transfer and to capitalize on this to maximize member participation
* To be recognized as a major influence in the career selection of new entrants
* To strengthen legislative and regulatory advocacy for the profession and to improve members’ understanding of the value of this activity

Leadership

Wisconsinites have a long tradition of participation at the national level in everything from business to politics. The WICPA continues that tradition with active leadership in the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and other national organizations. WICPA leaders provide a voice for members in decisions about the profession at the national level.

The WICPA takes a proactive approach in working with government on behalf of Wisconsin CPAs. Member leaders monitor legislation that might impact the profession, and when necessary, work with lawmakers to help make needed changes. The WICPA offers opportunities for political contributions, enabling members to have a direct impact on public policy.

Continuing Professional Education

The WICPA provides CPAs with high-quality, cost-effective continuing professional education. The CPE Department coordinates approximately 145 seminars yearly, 10 annual professional conferences and other miscellaneous CPE/networking events. Many events take place on-site in our Professional Development Center. On average, approximately 3,200 members and non-members annually attend our CPE programs.

WICPA also offers executive education through the [http://www.wicpa.org/CCFL/ccflinfo.htm Center for Corporate Financial Leadership.]

Peer Review

The WICPA administers the mandatory [http://www.wicpa.org/Peer%20Review/peerreviewintro.htm Peer Review] program in Wisconsin to assist CPAs in meeting Wisconsin license and AICPA membership requirements. CPA firms must undergo a peer review once every three years.

Networking Opportunities

* Committee Participation – With eight committees to choose from, participants address the many issues facing the CPA profession.
* CPE Events – Sharing knowledge, experiences and perspectives is a vital part of a CPA’s education. CPE events align peers with similar focus, offering opportunities to meet Department of Revenue and Internal Revenue Service officials, and talk with other CPAs about how they are conducting business, new technology, successful practice niches and best business practices.
* Discussion Groups – Members have independently formed regional forums and specialty area forums that are open to the entire membership of which no commitment is required on behalf of attendees:
* Madison Area Discussion Group
* Southeastern Area Discussion Group
* Personal Financial Planning Discussion Group
* Manufacturing Discussion Group

Volunteer Opportunities

* Volunteer Assistance – Through the years, WICPA members have volunteered in their communities in a variety of ways, from serving as treasurers on boards of nonprofits to offering their expertise and assistance to nonprofit agencies. In an effort to help volunteer CPAs and nonprofit agencies connect with each other, we provide a list of volunteer centers around the state that can be contacted directly.
* Classifieds – The Wisconsin Institute of CPAs publishes free classified ads for volunteer CPAs on its Web site, [http://www.wicpa.org www.wicpa.org] . The advertisements are from nonprofit organizations that match the interests of WICPA volunteers but have not been able to find volunteer CPAs after using regular local channels first. Eligible nonprofits can inquire about this service by contacting Amy Gaeth at amy@wicpa.org.
* Key Legislative Contact – The Public Policy Committee attempts to identify one to three WICPA members as key contact for each state senator and representative and U.S. senator and congressman. These key contact persons are instrumental in providing their legislators with WICPA positions on issues that affect the WICPA and/or the CPA profession.

Student Initiatives

The WICPA works to introduce high school and college students to the CPA profession through accounting career awareness programs, career fairs, classroom presentations and college speed networking events. The WICPA also offers scholarships and career awareness opportunities for high school business teachers:
* Scholarships – The WICPA Educational Foundation, Inc. provides scholarships for the fifth year of college course work required for CPA Exam eligibility. The Foundation also awards restricted scholarships.
* High School Educators Symposium – The Institute hosts an annual High School Educators Symposium to provide business and accounting teachers with innovative tools to enhance curriculum. Teachers make connections with CPAs, college professors and college students.
* Grants – The WICPA provides grants to teachers who create programs, projects and curriculum for young people to encourage accounting as a career choice. WICPA Educational Foundation grants are awarded on merit to educators who attend the High School Educators Symposium.

Financial Literacy

The WICPA promotes financial literacy among Wisconsinites through joint partnerships with local schools, businesses and organizations, as well as through state and national campaigns, such as [http://moneysmartwi.org Money Smart Week] , [http://www.360financialliteracy.org www.360financialliteracy.org] and [http://www.feedthepig.org www.feedthepig.org] .

Public Relations

WICPA educates the public about the value of CPAs and the CPA profession through press releases, articles and columns in business publications and advertising throughout the state. Members promote the profession recognizing their peers through the WICPA Annual Awards and Recognition Program.

Publications

The WICPA offers members a variety of print and electronic publications to stay up-to-date on issues relating to the CPA profession, including:
* On Balance: a bimonthly magazine featuring in-depth features on current issues and regular peer-written columns covering tax, technology, industry, fraud and young professionals. Advertising is available as a benefit in the magazine and on the Web.
* Frequency: a monthly e-newsletter, alerting members of activities in their areas of interest and location.
* The Bridge: a bimonthly CPE newsletter profiling upcoming seminars, conferences, breakfast meetings, discussion groups and events.
* The Bridge CPE E-nnouncement: a weekly e-newsletter updating members of upcoming seminars, conferences, self study, onsite training and other professional development resources.
* News for the CPA2B: a newsletter geared toward college students, providing information on accounting careers, the CPA Exam, and news about issues facing the CPA profession. More than 4,000 copies are circulated on college campuses each fall, winter and spring.
* CPE Catalog: an annual publication offering the most CPE programs for CPAs in the state.
* Accounting for the Future: a monthly e-newsletter for high school business teachers offering teaching tips, resources, information on financial literacy, current professional issues and trends, and links to engaging features about CPAs at work and at play.

Contact Us

Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants, 235 N. Executive Drive, Suite 200, Brookfield, WI 53005; Phone: 262-785-0445; Fax: 262-785-0838.

External Links

* Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants – [http://www.wicpa.org www.wicpa.org]
* American Institute of Certified Public Accountants – [http://www.aicpa.org www.aicpa.org]
* Wisconsin Department of Regulation and Licensing – [http://drl.wi.gov/index.htm drl.wi.gov/index.htm]
* 360 Degrees of Financial Literacy – [http://www.360financialliteracy.org www.360financialliteracy.org]
* Feed the Pig Campaign – [http://www.feedthepig.org www.feedthepig.org]


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