Keyword goes back to school with alumni in academia to learn how colleges and universities are making the grade.

Bob Moritz

Over the past four years alone, PwC has directly provided more than $30 million in funding to colleges and universities and to the students they educate.

Over the past several years, Keyword magazine has highlighted the successes of our alumni and their contributions to a diverse range of businesses. With the help of our alumni, we’ve run the bases of professional baseball, taken the temperature of the healthcare industry, listened to the beat of the recording industry and pressed the start button on technology and innovation. In this issue of Keyword we are excited to feature the stories of alumni that are critical to the lifeline of our future talent: professors and administrators of academic institutions. It is in these classrooms and corridors where it all begins. Where we connect to ideas bigger than ourselves, discover who we are and take those first big steps toward shaping a future.

From small private colleges to large public universities, these institutions represent constant social and industrial renewal. With each graduating class come young professionals eager to collect valuable experiences, share their perspectives and contribute to the flow of ideas and innovations that move our communities and our country forward. And I’m proud to note that PwC has a long-standing tradition of supporting higher education. Over the past four years alone, PwC has directly provided more than $30 million in funding to colleges and universities and to the students they educate. The funds have been used for curriculum enrichment initiatives, for activities that enhance diversity and for faculty research support. This is separate from the individual financial contributions our people and alumni put back into our academic system, as well as the time and energy that our people contribute on campuses, which has an even bigger impact on students, academics and the schools they visit.

It is in these classrooms and corridors where it all begins. Where we connect to ideas bigger than ourselves, discover who we are and take those first big steps toward shaping a future.

PwC has also been a leader in the creation of the Accounting Doctoral Scholars program, which was designed to positively influence the pipeline of doctoral candidates to potentially replace accounting faculty expected to retire over the next three to five years. The program is currently funding 120 people with public accounting experience as they make a permanent transition to both teaching and research in accounting at the university level. In addition to providing financial support for the program, PwC has promoted the opportunity internally to all our partners and staff to encourage interested candidates to consider an academic career.

While perhaps not always top of mind, academia represents a large and important part of our economy. Academia is facing some challenges similar to those of other businesses, but also some that are unique. In this issue of Keyword, we sit down with CFOs from the University of Oregon, the University of Texas at Austin and Northeastern University to learn how, in a time of fiscal constraint, these schools are balancing a quality education with the pressure to balance the books. Two professors and a PhD student describe their decision to go back into the classroom to help prepare tomorrow’s business and accounting professionals. Directors of admissions and career services at Duke University and Brigham Young University tell us what it takes to get into business school and what it takes to land a job after school, while a former PwC partner goes back to Ole Miss to lead the school’s foundation. And finally, we tune in to the story of one alumna who found a career in college radio.

It should come as no surprise to learn that many of our best and brightest alumni have decided to return to academia. They have accepted an important responsibility, one that will have a real and positive impact on a generation of leaders whose enthusiasm will drive our businesses into the heart of the new century. I’m happy to share their experiences with you.

Regards,
Robert E. Moritz
US Chairman and Senior Partner