Corporate organization promotes diversity in accounting

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By Corrie Coleman | Journalist

The Baylor Chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants was founded last fall. The organization strives to provide Baylor students with recruiting opportunities, professional contacts, and social events to build community within the business school. The National Association of Black Accountants, whose slogan is “Lifting as we climbing,” promotes diversity in business.

Houston senior Arianna Washington, president of the Baylor National Association of Black Accountants, said while the organization is open to all students, it primarily focuses on minority business students.

“We’re open to everyone but we’re mostly geared towards minorities because there aren’t many of them in accounting,” Washington said, adding that only 4% of people in the accounting field aren’t. white.

Being able to relate to the experiences and backgrounds of others in the accounting department is valuable for students, Washington said.

Washington wants the National Association of Black Accountants to help young students get involved in business school.

“When I was a freshman and sophomore, I just didn’t know about all the opportunities Baylor had to offer,” Washington said. “We want to educate our members and help them succeed.

Mount Pocono, Pa. Junior Ebonee Washington is the vice president of the Baylor chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants. She joined the organization in order to connect with other accounting majors and expand her network of contacts.

“Being able to meet some of the professionals in person has been my favorite part,” Washington said. “It’s a very big goal for everyone to be able to have a network. It’s really important in business to have people you can call on in your field who you know can help you.

Washington explained that having connections with others similar to herself in business school was encouraging.

“I thought it was nice to have someone who was a little more like you in your major,” Washington said. “[NABA] is a good opportunity for minorities to come to events and know that there will be people like them.

Houston senior Ashley Babineaux has been involved with the National Association of Black Accountants since her early days at Baylor. She believes the National Association of Black Accountants provides minority representation in the business school that did not exist before.

“I thought it would be a good thing to represent minority students in accounting and finance because there aren’t many of us,” Babineaux said. “Other organizations like the NAACP have pushed for diversity and this is just another step in that direction.”

Babineaux hopes the National Association of Black Accountants can remind minority students that they are not alone.

“At first, I didn’t know there were a lot of other black students who were in accounting school,” Babineaux said. “It’s a good way for students to know early on, ‘You’re not the only one.'”

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