This year, the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College has welcomed 11 new faculty members into the Lerner community. Joan Fico comes to Lerner from Fordham University and serves as an assistant professor of accounting and management information systems. Fico spoke with Lerner about her passion for accounting as well as why she chose to come to the University of Delaware.
Lerner: What is your professional and academic background?
Fico: I started my career in the industry as a Financial Analyst, Auditor, and Business/Systems Analyst and became a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and earned a master of science degree in information management. I transitioned from industry to academia and earned my MBA and Ph.D. in accounting from Rutgers University.
Lerner: What is your research focus?
Fico: My dissertation focused on the market reaction to interim CEO turnover. This paper gave rise to my increased focus on the market reaction to the Security and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) sustainability disclosure requirements. Currently, I am working on a series of papers on the present state of companies’ adherence to SEC’s disclosure requirements.
In addition to this work, I am interested in advancing and understanding the soft skills in auditing and forensic interviewing. These specific areas include skill-building in developing rapport, understanding memory, detecting deception, developing conversation management strategies and using evidence strategically.
Lerner: What inspired you to work in your field, research or subject area?
Fico: Unbeknownst to me, I discovered I have a natural enjoyment of working with numbers and using my analytical skills.
Lerner: What is it about UD that made you want to work, teach and research here?
Fico: First and foremost, my colleagues are among the best in accounting. They inspire me. The students are exceptional–they are so bright and hardworking (every professor’s dream)! I lived in New York City and the appeal of the natural beauty of Delaware’s parks, walking paths, rivers and beaches was another strong attraction.
Lerner: What course are you most excited to teach at Lerner?
Fico: This semester I am teaching Introduction to Financial Accounting (ACCT 207) and I am excited about inspiring students to learn about the ways they can appreciate and use accounting in their lives, no matter their major.
Lerner: What is something unique about you that may surprise your peers and students?
Fico: I love spending time outdoors. I appreciate nature and am an avid birder and photographer. I have an electric bike and an electric scooter, which have taken me on many trips around Central Park and New York City. You may even see it on campus! I have three wonderful children and a French bulldog named Ella.