Welcome, MPA Class of 2015!

New Texas MPA students,

In the not-to-distant future, you will be stepping foot on The University of Texas at Austin campus and spending plenty of time in the McCombs School of Business. The MPA Program Office staff and accounting faculty will be assisting you, step by step, to prepare you for your classes and the busy, yet exciting, employment recruiting season. In the meantime, we recommend that you…

A Mini Tour of the McCombs School of Business

Love the Place That You Study In!

The MPA Lounge

Study Group to Roommates: My MPA Family

First Impressions of Being a TA

MPAs Work Hard, Play Hard

MPAC in the Community

Live Music Capital of the World

Next Stop…More Barbecue

Run, Austin! (2.0)

I Met a Famous Author Thanks to UT!

We look forward to seeing you soon!

Prepare for the Texas MPA

Prepare quote

Incoming students are often concerned about being prepared to start our program. Yes, our program is challenging, and our students are high achievers, but have no fear! Taking a few extra steps now will help you feel ready.

  • Complete the pre-enrollment requirements prior to starting our program.
  • Take advantage of the self-study resource that is mailed to students early in the summer so that you can get a head start on the financial accounting (ACC 381) material.
  • Meet with your academic advisor and participate in a career orientation webinar and resume review early in the summer.
  • Review the MPA technology orientation website and complete the Excel training.
  • Plan to attend MPA orientation in August, as you will meet the rest of the traditional MPA incoming class; learn from faculty members, MPA staff, current students and alumni about course options, study abroad options and career paths; and prepare for the employment recruiting season.
  • Be prepared for a busy fall schedule! Not only do your classes intensify in the fall, but also employment recruiting is in full swing. Maintaining a balance between your courses and recruiting activities is a definite challenge, so plan to keep your course load moderate and extracurricular activities to a minimum.
  • Consider joining the MPA Council to connect with other MPA students and expand your network.

Our student bloggers provide their thoughts as they progress through our program. I recommend that you read the blog regularly to gain an insider’s perspective! Here are a few posts related to adapting to the program:

Surviving and Thriving as a tMPA

You Have a Liberal Arts Degree. What Should You Expect in the Program?

Here Comes Recruiting!

Teamwork and the MPA

U.S. Applicants: March 31 Final Deadline

March 31 2014

We are quickly approaching the final March 31 deadline. If you are interested in applying to the Texas MPA program and haven’t done so, you will have until 11:59 p.m. CST on Monday, March 31 to submit your online application from the ApplyTexas system. Be sure to submit all required application materials as soon as possible because space in our incoming class is limited.

Please note that it will take about 3 weeks for your official GMAT scores to be sent, received, and loaded to your UT application record. I recommend that you send me an email message with an unofficial report, in the meantime, if your official scores do not arrive by March 31.

If you have any questions or concerns about your application, please contact me.

Why Consider the Texas MPA?

We're No. 1

Although there are numerous reasons to consider attending The University of Texas at Austin’s Master in Professional Accounting program, here are a few highlights:

Want to learn more about our program from a student’s perspective? Read Live and Learn, our student blog, or contact an MPA admissions ambassador.

Hook ‘em!

UT-Austin’s Spring Break

spring break 2014

The University of Texas at Austin will have a spring break next week (March 10-14). The University offices, including the MPA Program Office, will remain open, but classes will not be in session.

Also, don’t forget that Daylight Saving Time begins for most of the U.S. and many parts of the world on Sunday, March 9!

2 a.m.

AICPA Scholarships

AICPA

If you are seeking scholarship opportunities for the Texas MPA program, be sure to check your eligibility to apply for an AICPA scholarship. The majority of the scholarships have an April 1 application deadline. Scholarships include (but are not limited to):

  • The John L. Carey Scholarship: provides financial assistance to liberal arts and other non-business related degree holders who are pursuing graduate studies in accounting and the CPA designation. Amount: $5,000/year
  • The AICPA Minority Scholarship: provides awards to outstanding undergraduate and graduate minority students who plan to pursue the CPA licensure. Amount: $5,000/year
  • The AICPA/Accountemps Student Scholarship: provides financial assistance to undergraduate & graduate-level students who are seeking the CPA license. Amount: $2,500/year

Many of our students have received these awards in the past. I would strongly encourage you to apply!

U.S. Application Deadline Extended

Deadline Extended

The MPA admissions committee has extended the U.S. application deadline to March 31, 2014, to provide you with additional time to submit your application materials.

Keep in mind that we review files on a continuous basis, in the order of completion, and cannot guarantee space availability. As a result, I recommend that you submit all application materials as soon as possible rather than waiting until the final deadline.

As a reminder, you can track the status of your application online in My Status.

MPA Application Review Update

update clock

  • U.S. applications are being reviewed on a rolling basis. Typically, applicants are notified of a decision within a month after file completion.  If you haven’t applied yet, please note that we are still accepting U.S. applications. The application deadline is March 1 has been extended to March 31.
  • The international application review is also under way. We anticipate releasing all decisions by the end of February or early March, at the latest.

If you have not received our decision but have a response deadline approaching from another university, please let me know. You will receive an e-mail notification after a decision has been entered, and the decision will be posted on the application status check page.

Austin Ranked #1: America’s Best-Performing City

Austin skyline

The Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos metropolitan area was ranked the Best Performing Large City in the U.S. by the Milken Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank. As stated by the Institute:

The Best-Performing Cities index was designed to measure objectively which U.S. metropolitan areas are promoting economic vitality based on job creation and retention, the quality of new jobs, and other criteria.

Austin, TX:

This year’s Best-Performing City, Austin, is a case study in concocting the proper recipe for economic vitality. A rising technology center, it is creating high-quality jobs that improve the region’s overall wage structure. Economic development officials rightly tout its business-friendly, low-tax, low-regulation climate when recruiting outside the state, particularly when soliciting California firms. They also herald the business startups of local entrepreneurs, the spinouts from the University of Texas, Austin, and the number and quality of UT graduates.

Other Texas Cities:

The Lone Star State, which has both technology and energy assets, claimed three of the Top 10 and seven of the Top 25 large cities.

Would you like to see where your city ranked? Visit www.best-cities.org/.

Admitted to the Texas MPA? Visit the UT Campus!

McCombs Plaza

We encourage admitted applicants to visit the Texas MPA program to learn more about our citycurriculum, career opportunities, faculty, and students. To arrange a personalized visit, please complete the form on our website for admitted applicants and submit it to the MPA Program Office at least two weeks prior to your planned visit.

We look forward to meeting with you!

MPA Merit Scholarships

MPA merit scholarships are offered to admitted U.S. applicants who demonstrate a superior record of academic accomplishment in their application materials. In addition, out-of-state tuition waivers are awarded each year to a select group of high-achieving non-Texas residents. Admitted applicants are considered automatically for these awards; a separate application is not required. Please note the following:

  • If you are admitted, the MPA Program Office will notify you via e-mail prior to your MPA admission response deadline if you are awarded an MPA Merit Scholarship and/or out-of-state tuition waiver.
  • If your admissions response deadline is approaching and you haven’t received notification of a scholarship award, please feel free to contact me so that I can update you on the status of our scholarships.
  • Due to limited funding, international applicants are not eligible for departmental recruiting scholarships and therefore should be prepared to meet all expenses from their own resources.

For information about other financial aid options, please visit our financial aid website.

 

MPA Admissions Update

I hope you enjoyed the holidays! Here is an all-important update on the status of our application reviews:

  • The MPA admissions committee is reviewing U.S. applications and will begin releasing decisions on a rolling basis soon. Admitted applicants will be considered automatically for a possible recruiting scholarship; a separate application is not required. If you are awarded a scholarship, you will be notified via e-mail prior to your response deadline.
  • The international application review will begin in mid- to late January, and decisions will be released in February. If your file was not complete by the January 5 application deadline, please be sure to submit all of your application materials no later than mid-January if you would like your application to be considered in the first round of admissions decisions. Also, please send me a copy of your GMAT or TOEFL score reports if they have not been posted to your application record yet.

Applicants will receive an e-mail notification after a decision has been entered, and the decision will be posted on the application status check page. As always, please contact me if you have any questions or concerns about your application.

University Closed for Holiday Break

The University of Texas at Austin will be closed for the holidays from Monday, December 23 through Wednesday, January 1. In addition, I will be out of the office through January 6 with limited access to email. If you need immediate assistance while I am out, please call the MPA Program Office at (512) 471-6559 for program-specific questions, or contact the Graduate and International Admissions Center if you are having technical difficulties with your application materials.

I hope you enjoy the holidays, and Happy New Year!

International Applicants: January 5 Application Deadline

International applicants: Your application deadline is quickly approaching! Be sure to continuously monitor the status of your application materials in the online application status checkWhat if your application is not complete by January 5?

  • Please keep me updated on the status of your outstanding application materials. If your file is not complete by the application deadline or very shortly thereafter, we will do what we can to include your file in the first round of admissions decisions; however, if your application materials arrive too late, we cannot guarantee it. As a result, make every attempt to complete your application as close to the application deadline as possible.
  • If your TOEFL/IELTS or GMAT scores have not been posted to your application record by January 5, please contact me and let me know the date that you requested your score report to be sent to The University of Texas at Austin. Additionally, send me a copy of the unofficial results if you have received them.
  • Your application will not be considered complete and subsequently forwarded to our department for a decision until all application materials, including the official score reports, have been received. On average, it takes 4 weeks for the score report to be sent, received, and loaded to an applicant’s record.

Do you have any concerns about your application? Please do not hesitate to contact me. I am here to help!

Reminder: All international applications will be reviewed after the January 5 application deadline, not on a rolling basis.

MPA Application Review

The MPA admissions committee is currently processing and reviewing completed U.S. applications. We will begin releasing admissions decisions in mid-January, shortly after our winter break. If you are still working on submitting your application materials, keep in mind that we do not release decisions in “rounds” but rather review files on a continuous basis, in the order of completion. As a result, I recommend that you complete your application early in our admissions cycle rather than waiting until our final March 1 deadline.

The international application review will begin in mid- to late January, after the January 5 application deadline. Decisions will be released throughout the month of February.

All application materials, including official score reports, need be received before your file will be considered complete and reviewed for a decision. You will receive an e-mail notification after a decision has been entered, and the official decision will be posted on the application status check page.

As always, please contact me if you have any questions or concerns about your application.

U.S. Applicants: December 1 Early Deadline

If you are working on submitting your application materials by the December 1 early deadline… great! Your application will be first in line for consideration. However, what if your application is not complete by December 1?

  • Keep in mind that the Texas MPA program uses a rolling admissions process in which we review applications in the order of completion starting with those completed by December 1 and ending with those completed by the March 1 final deadline. As a result, there will not be a significant impact on your chances for admission if your application is completed shortly after the 12/1 deadline.
  • I recommend that you aim to complete your application as early in the admissions cycle as possible due to space limitations. That said, you should take the necessary time to present the strongest application possible rather than overly rushing. For example, you may need more time to study for the GMAT or you might wait to submit your transcript after your fall grades are posted if:
    1. You are taking pre-enrollment courses in the fall,
    2. You are enrolled in a significant number of accounting classes in the fall, or
    3. Your upper-level GPA will be improved substantially with your fall grades.
  • Your application will not be considered complete and subsequently forwarded to our department for a decision until all application materials, including the official GMAT score report, have been received. On average, it takes 4 weeks for the score report to be sent, received, and loaded to an applicant’s record.

Do you have any concerns about your application? Please do not hesitate to contact me. I am here to help!

Please note: This early preferred deadline applies to U.S. applications only. All international applications will be reviewed after the January 5 application deadline.

McCombs Maintains Bragging Rights To Top-Notched Profs And Campus

 

Originally posted by Matt Turner in McCombs Today

Students at the McCombs School of Business continue to have some of the best teachers and campus life in the nation, according to the latest survey results from the Princeton Review.

For the second year in a row, McCombs placed among the top 10 in two categories—best professors and best campus environment—out of the 11 attribute rankings tracked by the Princeton Review and published in the annual guidebook, “The Best 295 Business Schools, 2014 Edition.”

Read More…

FAQs: International Applicants

Frequently-asked questions from international applicants:

Do I need to submit the Certification of Financial Responsibility with my application?

The Certification of Financial Responsibility is used for immigration document processing, not for admissions purposes. Therefore, the form and supporting documentation are not required for the completion of an admissions application. However, the International Office will not issue the Form I-20 or Form DS-2019 until a student has been officially admitted and certification of adequate financial resources has been received.

Do I need to submit TOEFL or IELTS scores if I studied in the U.S. or another English-only speaking country?

All international applicants must submit a TOEFL or IELTS score report, even if they studied in an English-only speaking country. Please see my previous blog post for additional information.

Do I need to submit a foreign credential evaluation from WES or another organization?

A foreign credential evaluation is not required. If a transcript is written in a language other than English, a complete and official English translation must be uploaded together with the original transcript.

Are all of the application materials required by the January 5 application deadline?

Your application will not be considered complete and subsequently forwarded to our department for a decision until all application materials, including the official score reports, have been received. On average, it takes at least 4 weeks for the score report to be sent, received, and loaded to an applicant’s record. Applications completed after the application deadline may need to be considered on a space-available basis.

When are international applications reviewed?

All international applications will be reviewed after the January 5 application deadline, not on a rolling basis. Admissions decisions are typically released throughout the month of February.

Am I eligible for departmental scholarships or other types of financial aid?

Due to limited funding, international students are not eligible for departmental recruiting scholarships and therefore should be prepared to meet all expenses from their own resources. A limited number of graduate assistantship positions are available through individual academic departments across the campus. For additional information, please visit our financial aid website.

Can I get in touch with any current international MPA students?

Texas MPA Admissions Ambassadors are a group of current MPA students (including international students) who have volunteered to share their experiences with prospective students. Our admissions ambassadors can provide you with their perspectives on MPA classes, the job search, campus life, and living in Austin.

FAQs: Transcripts

Should I submit my transcript now or wait until my fall grades are posted?

I recommend that you submit your transcript after your fall grades are posted if:

  1. You are taking pre-enrollment courses in the fall,
  2. You are enrolled in a significant number of accounting classes in the fall, or
  3. Your upper-level GPA will be improved substantially with your fall grades.

U.S. applicants: If you are targeting our early December 1 application deadline, you could opt to upload a current transcript (so that your application is complete by 12/1) and then send me an updated copy of your transcript via email as soon as the grades are available. However, please note that we use a rolling admissions process for U.S. applications. Your chances for admission would not be affected if you wait until fall grades are posted before uploading your transcript. Mid-December is still very early in our admissions cycle.

International applicants: You must upload a transcript for a complete application by the January 5 application deadline, even if your fall grades are not available. If you wish to provide an updated transcript, you can send it to me via email as soon as the fall grades are posted to your transcript.

Do I need to submit high school or community college transcripts?

It is not necessary for you to submit your high school transcript. Please submit transcripts from junior or community colleges if you completed our pre-enrollment requirements or any accounting courses at these institutions.

Do I need to send my official transcripts?

Please do not mail any hard copy documents for the MPA application. After you submit your online application and pay your application fee, UT will send you a UT EID and password via email. You will use the EID/password to log into the documents upload page and upload a copy of your official transcript(s). Please refer to the application materials checklist for detailed instructions. A community college transcript will need to be uploaded as a ”miscellaneous admissions document.”

I studied abroad for one semester, and the credit appears on my U.S. undergraduate transcript. Do I need to submit the transcript from the foreign university?

If you studied abroad for one semester only and the credit appears on your U.S. transcript, you will not need to request a transcript from the foreign university. However, if you studied abroad for more than one semester, you will need to submit the foreign university transcript.

If I need to submit a transcript from a foreign university, do I need to include a foreign credential evaluation from WES or another organization?

A foreign credential evaluation is not required. If a transcript is written in a language other than English, a complete and official English translation must be uploaded together with the original transcript.

What GPA is reviewed for MPA admissions purposes?

The Graduate and International Admissions Center will calculate a GPA using grades from all upper-division (junior- and senior-level) undergraduate courses and any graduate courses completed. Courses from professional programs (e.g., JD or MD) will not be factored into the upper-level GPA. The MPA admissions committee will review your performance not only in upper-division courses but also in courses within your major and any business-related courses, including those completed to fulfill the pre-enrollment requirements.

FAQs: MPA Statement of Purpose Essay

I frequently receive the following questions regarding the statement of purpose essay:

What should be the focus of the essay? 

How long should the essay be?

Do I need to submit the essay through ApplyTexas?

Need some tips to get you started? Click here to read my previous post on writing and submitting your essay.