A new public opinion survey conducted for theAICPA has revealed that nearly four in five Americans believe not-for-profit employees should be exposed to the same training as finance professionals at other businesses.

Seventy-nine percent of those surveyed in a recent ORC International CARAVAN survey for the AICPA said that they have donated money to or volunteered for a not-for-profit organization such as a charity, social welfare or religious organization). Additionally, specialized professional training was an important factor for 78 percent of respondents. 

“Tens of thousands of CPAs are involved with not-for-profits as external advisors, employees or board members,” stated Clar Rosso, AICPA vice president for member learning and competency. “Beyond that, nonprofit employment accounts for approximately 10 percent of total employment in the United States. So there are a significant number of individuals – CPAs and others – who we believe will welcome and benefit from the opportunity to earn a certificate for their important work.”

The survey results will provide incentive for accountants and others who work in or with the nation’s not-for-profit sector to consider earning a certificate of educational achievement for their work in this field through the AICPA’s newNot-for-Profit (NFP) Certificate Program. The NFP Certificate Program, launched today, is a 40-hour on-demand experience covering the essentials of not-for-profit financial responsibility.

Those currently advising not-for-profits on financial matters may not necessarily be CPAs. The Certificate Program will allow all of these individuals to earn an award of educational achievement for their knowledge in the areas of accounting, tax, audit risk and governance.

Next month, the AICPA will offer membership in a Not-for-Profit Section that will provide timely communications, education opportunities, tools and resources for individuals who work with or for not-for-profit entities.

For more information on the Not-for-Profit Certificate Program, head to the AICPA's sitehere.