UB accounting students showcase best practices at Beta Alpha Psi’s annual meeting

Eight UB students with a plaque recognizing their second-place win in the Best Practices competition.

School of Management students won second place internationally in the Best Practices competition. Back row, from left: Katriel Agregado, Zengzeng Mu, Kristina Jiang, Huiwen Chen and Justin Froese. Front row, from left: Student mentors Sydney Merritt, Christina Pham and Tien Nguyen.

Release Date: August 23, 2022

“Our chapter, our school and our community are better because of these student leaders. ”
Rose Hu, Faculty Advisor for Beta Alpha Psi and Clinical Assistant Professor of Accounting and Law
UB School of Management

BUFFALO, N.Y. — For more than 40 years, the University at Buffalo School of Management’s chapter of Beta Alpha Psi has garnered national recognition for its programming, service and accomplishments. This summer, at the organization’s annual meeting in Orlando, several students added to the chapter’s long legacy of success by bringing home some hardware and representing UB on the international stage.

Founded in 1919, Beta Alpha Psi is an honor organization for financial information students and professionals, with more than 300 chapters nationwide. UB’s Zeta Theta chapter was chartered in 1981.

In the Best Practices competition, the School of Management’s “Art of Change” team won second place internationally for a workshop they developed and implemented on campus to help fellow students overcome pandemic-related challenges in their professional development.

The winning team was made up of undergraduate and master’s students Katriel Agregado of East Amherst, Huiwen Chen of Brooklyn, Justin Froese of Wantagh, Kristina Jiang of Brooklyn, Zengzeng Mu of Kings Park and Vicki Wang of Woodside. In addition, they benefited from the mentorship of three MS Accounting students: Sydney Merritt, Tien Nguyen and Christina Pham.

“The pandemic greatly affected the degree to which students were able to develop the soft skills typically strengthened through in-person interaction,” Agregado says. “We aimed to support students as they prepare to transition from higher education to young professionals facing a new hybrid environment.”

For their project, the group hosted an advanced interviewing skills workshop for Beta Alpha Psi members. The two-day session started with a discussion on how the pandemic has changed the recruiting process, facilitated by Michael Draves, BS ’93, executive in residence for accounting in the School of Management.

On day two, participants could practice their skills through mock interviews with School of Management accounting alumni. Along with Draves, the following alumni volunteered as interviewers: Matthew Silver, BS ’13, MS ’14, from Roviant Sciences; Stephen Turner, BS ’08, from the Bonadio Group; Jeremy Sharkey, BS ’93, from SPX FLOW Inc.; Jerry Jacobik, BS ’03, from Friedman LLP; Shawn Frier, BS ’90, MBA ’91, from Freed Maxick; and Min Zheng, MBA ’08, from TransUnion.

“By bringing in Beta Alpha Psi alumni as mock interviewers, we are connecting our student body with professionals and keeping our alumni connected to the chapter community,” Agregado says. “With this practical skills workshop, we are shaping the next generation of leaders within Beta Alpha Psi.”

Going forward, the students hope to make their award-winning interviewing workshop an annual spring event that complements a networking workshop they host each fall.

A group of UB students outside a Boys & Girls Club in Orlando, Florida.

As part of Beta Alpha Psi's Community Impact Day, the UB students visited a Boys & Girls Club in an underserved Orlando neighborhood to teach children about the importance of literacy.

Proudly representing the UB School of Management

The School of Management’s chapter was well represented throughout Beta Alpha Psi’s annual meeting.

Colleen Chen, a senior in the accounting program from Amherst, was selected to participate in Project Run With It, a competition that furthers the organization’s community service mission by engaging students in a real-world consulting project. Alongside teammates from other universities, Chen had less than two days to develop and present a solution to a pressing issue facing this year’s nonprofit client, the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA).

In addition, during the chapter operations portion of the meeting, senior accounting students Andrew Chin, Amy Lian and Ting Zheng presented on the UB chapter’s peer mentorship and Accounting Advisory Council mentorship programs.

“Their presentation was an excellent way to showcase our chapter’s mentorship efforts and share our knowledge with other chapters from around the world,” says Rose Hu, clinical assistant professor of accounting and law and faculty advisor for Beta Alpha Psi. “Our chapter, our school and our community are better because of these student leaders.”

Four students wearing Project Run With It tee shirts.

During Project Run With It, Colleen Chen, pictured at right, consulted on a project for the nonprofit ALPFA alongside teammates from other universities.

The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school also has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, Forbes and U.S. News & World Report for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit management.buffalo.edu.

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Matthew Biddle
Assistant Director of Communications
School of Management