For the third year in a row, a University of Delaware student has been selected by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) to be a PCAOB Scholar. Isaac Perera, this year’s recipient from Newtown, Pennsylvania, is an honors accounting and management information systems double major at the Alfred Lerner College of Business & Economics.
PCAOB is a merit-based scholarship program meant to assist students who are likely to become auditors and to make a difference for those who might otherwise change career plans. Perera was awarded a scholarship amount of $10,000 to supplement his education for the 2022 – 2023 academic year.
“When I first found out I was chosen for the program, I was entirely grateful. It was such an honor to be picked out of all of my great peers and classmates. I am so glad to be recognized for my work in the classroom and on campus,” Perera said.
Debra Dragone, UD’s instructor of accounting and associate chairperson for UD’s Department of Accounting and MIS nominated Perera for the scholarship.
“Isaac is an outstanding student and an asset to the department. He passes forward his knowledge as a tutor in our peer tutoring program. We are looking forward to working with him in that program and other events starting in the fall,” Dragone shared.
Perera discovered his passion for accounting in high school. His exposure to the coursework cultivated his interest in key accounting concepts. When asked about why he pursued accounting he shared that, “Accounting is the backbone and language of business. Everybody needs and relies on accountants.”
Lerner’s extensive accounting program initially caught Perera’s eye. “The main reason I was attracted to Lerner’s accounting program was the fact that the school truly puts its money where its mouth is,” Perera said. “Anybody can tell you about experience, lessons and opportunities, but Lerner has truly acted upon all of these.
“The most valuable thing I learned from Lerner is that despite all of the opportunities that you will be handed, it is up to you to make the most out of anything in life. We truly only get out as much as we put in. That applies to all facets of life, but I have seen that firsthand from my classes and events hosted by Lerner, particularly at Meet the Firms in the fall,” he said.
Throughout his time at UD, Perera has fostered relationships with faculty. Robert Paretta, retired UD associate professor of accounting, and Guido Geerts, professor of accounting made the biggest impact on his career thus far.
“Professor Paretta, who we called ‘Uncle Bob’. This was my first college-level accounting class and the place where I learned the absolute fundamentals of the field. Professor Guido Geerts was the other professor who I had for Accounting Information Systems. His course was my favorite accounting class because it combined two majors into one class. He really got me out of my shell and worked with me to learn about combining accounting and management information systems concepts.”
Perera plans on becoming a CPA after he graduates in 2023. He hopes to excel in his career goal to become a partner at a firm, “Lerner has given me a multitude of opportunities for professional development. I will always look back at the accounting program at Lerner as the reason why I got there.”