The American Institute of CPAs announced that this year it will award one-year scholarships totaling more than $370,000 to 117 undergraduate and graduate students through the AICPA’s Legacy Scholars program.

Established in 2011, the program is comprised of scholarship recipients from three scholarships—the AICPA AICPA/Accountemps Student Scholarship, awarded to 10 students for a total of $25,000; AICPA John L. Carey Scholarship awarded to 10 students for a total of $50,000; and the AICPA Scholarship for Minority Accounting Students, awarded to 97 students for a total of $296,500. After their academic careers, those recipients continue to receive benefits through the AICPA Legacy Scholars Alumni.

“We created the AICPA Legacy Scholars program to incorporate elements of career development and professional support into our existing scholarship programs,” said Scott Moore, AICPA’s director of student and professional pathways, in a statement. “Through the program, the AICPA is cultivating a sense of community in our scholarship recipients and ensuring that they have the support and guidance they need as they complete their education and start their careers as accountants.”

As part of the program, the AICPA Legacy Scholars perform eight hours of self-selected community service per semester that must be related to accounting, serve the community, and be meaningful to the student. The scholars are encouraged to be creative, with past projects including teaching financial literacy to veterans, speaking to peers in the classroom about the role of a CPA, and blogging about accounting.

"Being selected as an AICPA Legacy Scholar provided me with an amazing opportunity to share my love of accounting with other students,” stated Ashley Amos, a master’s of accountancy student at Brigham Young University. “For my service project, I represented the CPA profession while helping students through the process of choosing a major and a career. I was able to ease their stress by sharing my own experiences – I found the process of helping them to be very rewarding.”

The 300-plus Legacy Scholars are Student Affiliate Members of the AICPA, a free membership option available to all students who are enrolled in school. They also receive a coach who provides guidance on the student’s service project and serves as an advisor for questions related to the profession and work environment, as well as access to interactive community and its resources.

Students write an essay on their intended service project as part of the application process and, if, selected, are given guidance on its execution.

To apply or find out more about the AICPA’s scholarships, visit ThisWaytoCPA.