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Accounting Schools in Maine

The accounting schools in Maine can help you prepare for a rewarding career in various accounting roles, including but not limited to accountant, auditor, and financial planner. This guide to graduate-level accounting programs in Maine provides information on not-for-profit master’s in accounting programs available in the state, including profiles on select in-person and online programs. We have also included information on the process of becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in Maine, and employment and salary data for accountants and auditors. Given the limited number of programs in Maine, students seeking a master’s degree in accounting may want to consider programs in nearby states such as Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, or Vermont.

Quick Facts

  • There are 10 colleges and universities with accounting degree programs in Maine.1
  • 4 schools offer a master’s or advanced degree in accounting.1
  • No schools were ranked in Forbes’ Best Business Schools 2019.2
  • No schools were ranked in the Princeton Review’s Great Schools for Accounting Majors 2020.3
  • No schools were ranked in Public Accounting Report’s Top 50 Master’s Accounting Programs 2019.4
  • No schools were ranked in US News & World Report’s Best MBA Accounting Programs 2020.5
  • 1 school has a 2018 CPA exam pass rate at or above the national average of 51.9%.6
  • 1 university and business school is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International.7
  • No schools are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).8
  • 1 school is accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE).9

For not-for-profit colleges and universities with accounting degree programs.

Table of Contents
Steps to Become a CPA in Maine
Maine CPA Salary and Job Outlook
Top Master’s in Accounting Programs in Maine
Maine Master’s in Accounting Program Comparison
Select Schools in Maine with Master’s in Accounting Programs
Additional Resources
Frequently Asked Questions

Steps to Become a CPA in Maine

The Maine Board of Accountancy (the Board) licenses CPAs in the state. There are five main steps to complete in order to earn a CPA license in Maine.

  1. Complete 150 semester hours of college-level coursework in accounting.
  2. Accumulate the required hours of experience.
  3. Pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
  4. Apply for a license.
  5. Receive a license.

1. Complete 150 semester hours of college-level coursework in accounting.

Like most states, Maine enforces the 150-semester hour rule for CPA licensure. This means that candidates for licensure must complete at least 150 semester hours of post-secondary coursework to apply for a CPA license. The education must include a bachelor’s degree or higher and at least 15 credit hours in qualifying accounting coursework, of which at least three must be in auditing and attestation. Qualifying accounting areas for licensure include courses in:

  • Accounting information systems
  • Accounting research and analysis
  • Auditing and attestation services
  • Ethics relevant to the practice of public accounting
  • Financial accounting and reporting for business organizations
  • Financial accounting and reporting for government and not-for-profit entities
  • Financial statement analysis
  • Fraud examination
  • Internal controls and risk assessment
  • Managerial or cost accounting
  • Tax research and analysis
  • Taxation

2. Accumulate the required hours of experience.

Prospective Maine CPAs must accumulate at least two years of professional accounting experience under the supervision of a licensed CPA while employed at a licensed public accounting firm. Full- or part-time experience can qualify, with part-time experience being counted as 2,080 work hours equaling one year and 173 hours equaling one month. Qualifying work experience must involve the use of accounting or auditing skills, the issuance of reports and involve one or more of the following duties: the provision of management advisory services; financial advisory services or consulting services; the preparation of tax returns; or the furnishing of advice on tax matters.

3. Pass the Uniform CPA Examination.

Prospective CPAs in Maine are eligible to sit for the required exam once they have completed basic courses in accounting and auditing and expect to complete a bachelor’s or higher degree within 120 days following the exam. The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) handles the application and testing process for Maine applicants to the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) Uniform CPA Exam. Registration for the exam is completed online through the >NASBA website. All four sections of the exam must be passed with a score of 75 or greater within an 18-month rolling period beginning on the date that the first section is completed.

4. Apply for a license.

CPA licenses are granted through the Maine Department of Professional and Financial Regulation and applied for using the CPA Individual License Application. Applicants should submit the application and all necessary fees along with the Verification of Work Experience form, which must be completed by the applicant’s work experience supervisor.

5. Receive a license.

Once the Board has received the license application and determined that all qualifications have been met, a license will be issued and the applicant may begin practice as a CPA.

CPA License Renewal and Continuing Education Information

Licenses in Maine must be renewed annually. CPAs must complete 40 hours of continuing professional education (CPE) per year and at least four hours of CPE in ethics every three years. Up to 20 hours of excess CPE may be carried over into the following year.

Maine CPA Salary and Job Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the 4,390 accountants and auditors in Maine earn an average salary of $70,090 per year.10 The Portland area has the highest employment and salaries for accounting professionals in the state, with 1,780 accountants earning an average annual salary of $78,390.10 Projections Central forecasts only 0.2% growth for accountants and auditors over the next 10 years, a rate much slower than the national average of 6.4%.11

Maine CPA Salary by Metro Area

Metro AreaNumber Employed10Average Annual Salary10
Bangor500$69,850
Lewiston-Auburn540$65,240
Portland-South Portland1,780$78,390
Northeast Maine nonmetropolitan area400$65,950
Southwest Maine nonmetropolitan area1,100$60,940

Maine Master’s in Accounting Program Comparison

Below we have compiled a table including information about all not-for-profit Maine colleges and universities offering a master’s degree in accounting. The graduation rate is for first-time undergraduates seeking a bachelor’s degree, but since it is widely considered to be an indicator of a school’s overall success, we have included it for comparison. Also please note that tuition per credit is based on in-state, on-campus tuition; per-credit rates may vary for out-of-state and online students.

School NameAccreditationCPA Exam Pass Rate6Master’s in Accounting Degree(s)Acceptance Rate12Grad Rate1Online Options?Tuition per Credit
Husson CollegeIACBE43.8%BS-Accounting (BSA)/MBA*N.Av.57%Yes$374
St. Joseph’s College of MaineN.Av.Master of Accountancy (MAcc)N.Av.67%Yes$574/td>
Thomas College57.1%MBA-AccountingN.Av.52%$862
University of MaineAACSBN.Av.MBA-AccountingN.Av.57%Yes$461

  • * indicates combined program.
  • — indicates none.
  • N.Av. indicates no data available.

Select Schools in Maine with Master’s in Accounting Programs

Traditional Programs

Thomas College

The H. Allen Ryan School of Business at Thomas College offers an Accelerated Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Accounting program that can qualify graduates to sit for the Uniform CPA Exam. The accelerated program is designed to expose students with an undergraduate degree in accounting to theoretical and applied business scenarios. Full-time enrollment is required and allows students to graduate in less than one year. Start dates are in August or January, with students beginning new classes every eight weeks. Courses in the 33-credit hour program include Advanced Fraud and Forensics; Quantitative Analysis for Decision Making; Capital Markets; and Advanced Regulations and Taxation. An undergraduate degree in accounting is required for admission. Undergraduate students may be interested in Thomas’s 3+1 program to earn their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in only four years. For students seeking part-time or online study, Thomas also offers an MBA that can be completed entirely online.

The University of Maine

The University of Maine’s (UMaine) Maine School of Business offers a flexible Master of Business Administration (MaineMBA) with an Accounting concentration that prepares students for careers in accounting and business. The 33-credit hour program focuses on accounting principles and building the skills necessary to succeed in accounting roles across a variety of fields. MaineMBA in Accounting students are required to take eight core courses, followed by three accounting electives. Available accounting courses include Advanced Managerial Accounting; Tax Planning for Small Business Owners; and Accounting Theory & International Accounting. The MaineMBA in Accounting is available to students with a bachelor’s degree in any field, allowing students without a business degree to take foundation courses as part of the MaineMBA curriculum. A bachelor’s degree with at least a 3.0 GPA is required for admission, as well as a score of 500 or greater on the GMAT. GMAT waivers are available for students with an advanced degree, CPA license, Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification, or five or more years of professional or military experience.

Online and Hybrid Programs

Husson University

The College of Business at Husson University offers an online Bachelor Science in Accounting (BSA)/ Master of Business Administration (MBA) dual-degree that will fulfill the 150-semester hour requirement for CPA licensure. MBA coursework focuses on management to supplement the professional accounting training of the BSA. Graduate coursework begins in the student’s senior year to expedite the completion of the 152-credit hour dual program. Upper-level accounting courses include Accounting for Nonprofit Organizations; Federal Taxation; Accounting and Reporting; and Consolidation Advanced Problems. The MBA curriculum covers topics such as global management, financial management, and business law. Beyond the online coursework, required internships grant students hands-on experience tackling real-world accounting situations. Admission into the program requires the submission of high school and college transcripts. No SAT or ACT scores are required. Transfer students may transfer up to 90 credits into the online program. Financial aid may be available to students who fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

St. Joseph’s College of Maine

St. Joseph’s College of Maine offers an online Master of Accountancy (MAcc) degree to help students develop accounting skills and prepare for the ethical challenges of a global field. The program is designed for students who hold an undergraduate degree in business or have completed an equivalent program of study. The flexible format will allow full-time students with all the necessary prerequisites to graduate within a year. Professional ethics and responsibility are emphasized throughout the 30-credit hour curriculum with courses such as Legal Environment/Business Law (Ethics); International Accounting; Leadership and Relationship Management; and (Applied) Corporate Financial Management. Currently practicing accountants can gain course credit for their experience in the field. Applicants to the program must have an undergraduate degree with a GPA of at least 2.5 and a “B-” or higher in prerequisite coursework. Previous business or accounting coursework is not required for entry into the program. However, students without the necessary prerequisites will need to complete a series of preparatory courses before beginning the core curriculum. For currently licensed CPAs, St. Joseph’s also offers CPE opportunities.

Additional Resources

Top Accounting Firms for Graduates in Maine

  • Baker, Newman, Noyes Accountants & Advisors (BNN): A member of Baker Tilly International, Portland-based BNN is one of the largest independent CPA firms in Maine.
  • Berry Talbot Royer, Certified Public Accountants: A local accounting firm located in Falmouth, Berry Talbot Royer provides financial and accounting with an eye towards customer service.
  • Wipfli: Wipfli is a national firm with offices in Augusta and Portland with associates who specialize in fields such as nonprofits, healthcare, and technology.
  • BerryDunn: With offices in Portland and Bangor, BerryDunn is Northern New England’s largest accounting firm, offering accounting, assurance, and consulting services across a variety of industries.

Maine Accounting Associations

Frequently Asked Questions

How much do CPAs in Maine make?

According to the BLS, the average annual salary for accounting professionals in Maine is $70,090.10 Accountants and auditors in the Portland area earn the highest average salary at $78,390 per year.10

How do you become a CPA in Maine?

To become a CPA in Maine, 150 semester hours of college-level coursework in accounting is required including the award of a bachelor’s degree or higher. You must also obtain two years of professional accounting experience under a licensed CPA and pass the AICPA Uniform CPA Exam. Once you have completed these requirements, you may apply to the Board for a license.

How do I maintain my CPA license in Maine?

CPAs in Maine must renew their license annually. In addition to renewal, every year you must complete 40 hours of CPE, including four hours of ethics CPE for every three years. Renewal forms and CPE verification may be submitted through the Board’s website.

References:
1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Forbes Best Business Schools 2019: https://www.forbes.com/business-schools/list/2/
3. The Princeton Review. The Best 385 Colleges, 2020 Edition. The Princeton Review, 2019.
4. Public Accounting Report 2019 Top 50 Master’s Accounting Programs: https://wpcarey.asu.edu/sites/default/files/par-grad-2019.pdf
5. US News & World Report Best Accounting Programs 2020: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools/accounting-rankings
6. National Association of State Boards of Accountancy. The NASBA Report on the CPA Exam: Candidate Performance on the Uniform CPA Examination, 2018 Edition. National Association of State Boards of Accountancy, Inc., 2019.
7. Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) International: https://www.aacsb.edu/about
8. Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP): https://acbsp.org/
9. International Accreditation Council for Business Education (IACBE): https://iacbe.org/
10. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2019 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Maine: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_me.htm
11. Projections Central, Long Term Occupational Projections: https://projectionscentral.org/Projections/LongTerm
12. US News & World Report Best Business Schools 2020: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-business-schools