Sante Fe College's campus in Gainesville, Fla.
Sante Fe College's campus in Gainesville, Fla.

Beginning Fall 2017, Santa Fe College, located in Gainesville, Fla., will launch a four-year, bachelor's in accounting program, the school recently announced.

The hybrid digital/in-person course was approved by the Florida State Board of Education earlier this month - the 11th such four-year, college degree program to be approved by the Board in two years’ time.

The accounting program was created in part to retain professionals in the state of Florida, which has experienced a dearth of talent after many college graduates go on to work for firms elsewhere in the country. Dr. Gary McGill, associate dean and director of University of Florida's Fisher School of Accounting - also located in Gainesville - told local PBS affiliate WUFT that many of the large school's accounting students relocate upon graduation, leaving Florida - and especially Gainesville - undermanned.

“90 plus percent take entry level jobs in international and regional public accounting firms," McGill said. "About half start in large Florida cities and half go out of state, with Atlanta and New York City as the most popular locations. Typically fewer than 5 graduates out of 180 stay in Alachua County."

“It’s one of the degrees that will always be needed,” Santa Fe College president Dr. Jackson Sasser also told WUFT. “We’ve been searching for accountants for almost two years."

For more on Santa Fe College's business programs, head to the school's site here.

Sean McCabe

Sean McCabe is a senior editor with Accounting Today.