Accounting Summer Scholars Session I

From Wall Street to Main Street, accounting shapes and informs all aspects of life. This course introduces students to fundamental accounting concepts and processes in addition to the important roles that CPAs (certified public accountants) play with every type of organization, from the local flower shop to the multi-national pharmaceutical company.

The framework for this innovative course consists of an overview of accounting concepts and techniques, financial statements, and case studies based on current events, such as proposed changes to U.S. tax law and European Union fines on Apple Computer. The course enables students to see how CPAs protect investors, influence public policy, analyze businesses, and advise companies, ranging from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies.

Students will engage in interactive exercises that address fundamental accounting techniques, financial statement interpretation, tax planning, and current tax policy issues. Through a mix of class discussions and presentations by accounting professionals, business leaders, and entrepreneurs, the course will also demonstrate the infinite opportunities that accounting majors have in public accounting, for-profit businesses, non-profit organizations, and academia.

During the first week, students learn about the accounting profession and explore the basics of financial and tax accounting through exercises, presentations, and cases. Week one concludes with a field trip to Chicago to visit an international accounting/consulting firm and see the breadth of CPA services.

During week two, students continue their exposure to accountancy concepts and applications and examine the role of CPAs in non-profit organizations. In addition, students will hear from additional guests who discuss trade-offs in tax policy. The week concludes with small group presentations regarding tax policy issues.


Course Schedule

This course will be offered during Summer Scholars Session I on campus.


Financial Aid Opportunity

Through the generosity of the KPMG LLP grant, students admitted into the on-campus Accounting course may be eligible to receive up to a full tuition scholarship and room and board expenses. Learn more about this grant and how to apply for the grant here. 

Academic Directors

Jamie O'Brien

Jamie O'Brien

Jamie O'Brien is a "Double Domer" ('88, '93 J.D.), a Teaching Professor in the Accountancy Department at the Mendoza College of Business, a CPA, and an Attorney. O'Brien has taught business law, accounting, and tax courses for more than 25 years at Notre Dame.

Professor O'Brien advises accounting students on all aspects of the Accountancy Major, as well as the CPA examination. O'Brien began his career in public accounting, working for three years as a CPA before returning to academia to attend Notre Dame law school. As a CPA, O'Brien advised many small businesses concerning accounting, planning, tax, and transition matters. He began teaching while in law school and has continued teaching for the past 28 years. As an attorney, O'Brien utilized his accounting background to advise business clients and structure transactions to benefit all parties involved.

Currently, Professor O'Brien serves at the Assistant Chairman of the Accountancy Department at Notre Dame and works with young adults as they discern their path through the Mendoza College of Business and into the Accounting world.

Claire Donovan

Claire Donovan

Claire Donovan is an Associate Teaching Professor with 10 years of professional experience in public accounting with Ernst & Young. At EY, she was a senior manager in the assurance practice, serving clients in a variety of industries, including manufacturing, retail, and service. At Notre Dame, Claire has taught the Foundations of Accounting course, an introductory course to financial accounting, as well as Measurement and Disclosure II, an upper level accounting course. She also serves as the Faculty Advisor for the Notre Dame Accounting Association (NDAA) student organization on campus. Prior to joining Notre Dame, Claire was a Senior Lecturer at Saint Mary’s College, where she taught Principles of Financial Reporting, Principles of Managerial Accounting, Intermediate Financial Accounting I and II, Fraud Examination, Accounting for Not-for-Profit Organizations, Auditing, and Advanced Financial Accounting.

Claire received her BS in Finance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her MSA from the University of Notre Dame.