Randawnique Coakley accomplishes a first among her peers; passes all four parts of the UCPA exam as an undergraduate student
Bahamian Randawnique Coakley has taken and passed all four parts of the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination, the test that future accountants must master to meet one of the major requirements for working as a licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the United States. The test is made up of four parts, administered one session at a time.
The recent Saint Leo University graduate, a native of New Providence who earned a bachelors in accounting and economics from the Catholic university, with the passing of the four parts of the exam, accomplished a first among her peers in the university’s accounting program.
It is much more typical for accounting graduates to start studying for the first part of the exam in the summer after their graduation, or during a graduate program, and to proceed from there over the course of several months. People generally study several hours a day for five to six days a week, for up to two months for each portion of the exam. The actual testing takes four hours per section.
It is also common to have to re-take parts of the exam, industry statistics show. Coakley had to retake only one section.
“Who passes all four parts of the CPA Exam before starting grad school? Nobody that I know,” said Dr. Passard Dean, professor of accounting and finance at the Tapia College of Business at Saint Leo. Dean was one of Coakley’s professors at the university and has mentored many accounting students there, as well as students from the Caribbean. Coakley begins work for her Master of Accounting at North Carolina State University in August 2019.
So, by all common standards, the 20-year-old Coakley has been running ahead of schedule. Having the CPA Exam credential in hand “helps with making me a better candidate looking for a job” after graduate school, she said. She just does not want to have to be thinking about the exam while working hard to locate and excel at her first job, she said.
Coakley first encountered accounting during high school at St. Augustine’s College, and decided to pursue the field at university. Once at Saint Leo, she took a course in economics, and decided she wanted to pursue both majors at the university’s Tapia College of Business.
Studying for two majors required that she carry more college credits than many of her peers. Her course load made her eligible to begin taking the CPA Exam during the spring semester of her senior year. Coakley passed three of the four sections while still a senior, and successfully completed the last section soon after. She was informed of her success by the end of May.
Coakley also completed Saint Leo University’s rigorous Honors Program.
Coakley graduated with her Saint Leo University classmates on Saturday, April 27, in a ceremony in Tampa, Florida. By earning nearly perfect grades in her courses over her four years of study, Coakley graduated summa cum laude, or, with highest honors.