Penn State Continuing Education launches accounting programs

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Bookkeeping and accounting jobs are in demand. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks will grow 14 percent this decade as the number of businesses increase and financial regulations become more stringent. Penn State Continuing Education can help adults prepare for these careers with the launch of new basic and advanced accounting certificates available at Continuing Education locations in Lewistown and State College.

“Small business owners, especially those affected by the natural gas exploration boom in Pennsylvania, tell me they need competent bookkeepers,” said William Engelbret, associate professor of accounting at Penn State Altoona and developer of the professional accounting certificate programs for Penn State Continuing Education. “This job requires a specific set of skills that can be acquired in a series of courses.”

Engelbret added, “The courses are taught in a slow and deliberate way, so students who have not taken college courses before can tackle the material. Both accounting certificates help adult students learn basic business transaction skills and how to record them manually and in an automated computer environment as well as how financial information flows through an organization.”

The Basic Accounting Certificate is 18 credits; the Advanced Accounting Certificate is 16 credits. In the basic program, students learn how to record business transactions. The advanced program helps students learn to think in a more complex way about financial information, so they can assist a business in better managing revenues and planning for the future.

Students who complete the advanced certificate also will be prepared to take the national exam to become a Certified Bookkeeper through the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers. In addition, the credits earned in the certificates can be applied toward a Penn State associate or bachelor’s degree in business administration.

For information about the Penn State Continuing Education accounting certificate programs, call 814-865-3443 or 800-228-1627 or visit

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Last Updated September 19, 2013