• Taking the CPA Exam Blog

    11/19/2014 - Amanda Ramsey

    Hi Everyone! My name is Amanda Ramsey and I am a staff accountant currently working for Ryan & Wetmore, PC. I work in the office located in Tyson’s Corner, and have been here for about three years. One of those years I spent as an undergraduate intern. I graduated from George Mason University with my undergraduate accounting degree in December of 2012. Unfortunately, I did not remain in school to get the 150 credit hours, so I will be jumping back into a Master’s Program following the completion of my exams. This will probably be one of the most difficult parts of getting my license, as I am just a little removed from the school atmosphere. I started my journey this past May and have sat for two parts of my exam (BEC & FAR) and passed both! I will be sitting for my REG exam in late November of this year. I look forward to blogging with all of you throughout my journey and I am excited to hear about other’s journeys as we embark on the beginning of the rest of our careers!


    11/13/2014 - Justin Riley

    Hello everyone!  My name is Justin and I am currently in the process of taking the CPA exam and would like to share my journey with you along the way!  Hopefully through my experiences, both good and bad we can all learn together and make the process of studying and taking the exams as easy as possible.

    First I would like to introduce myself a little.  I graduated from the University of Scranton in 2013 with a degree in Accounting.  Knowing I would be a few credits short of the 150 credit hours I decided to stay at Scranton for an extra year and get an MBA with a concentration in both accounting and finance.  After graduating, I then started working for Baker Tilly in their DC office and have been working there for three months now as a staff accountant.  This is my first job in accounting out of college and it has been a great learning experience at Baker Tilly in just the few months I have been there.  Now that I have finally started my career and began working, the next goal is to sit for the CPA exam and become licensed as a Certified Public Accountant.

    I always knew I wanted to take the exams throughout college but it always felt like that wouldn’t happen till years later.  Well those years went by fast and here I am today studying and actually taking the tests.   I just finished the process of studying for FAR which is the first section I am scheduled to take in the coming week.  So I am in review mode and trying to remember all that I can before the big day.

    I am excited to be able to share my experience with everyone and hopefully you will find my advice and insight both helpful and reassuring.  Studying and taking the CPA is not done overnight and takes time.  I will share both the struggles I am experiencing and the positive events throughout my process.  For those who are also in the process of taking the exams I hope you can relate to what I am experiencing and for those of you who plan to take the CPA in the future I hope you can get a sense of what to expect and how to better prepare once you plan to start the process as well.  

    11/3/2014 - Lauren Pecor

    Are you an accounting student who is thinking about taking the CPA exam? Maybe you’ve already graduated and decided to become a CPA, but do you know what it takes to add those three letters to the end of your name?  My name is Lauren Pecor, and my goal in contributing to this CPA blog is to guide you through the CPA exam journey by way of my personal experiences.

    So who am I? I’m currently a Senior Accountant at Aronson LLC, a mid-sized regional public accounting firm in the DC metro area. Before starting my career at Aronson in January 2013, I attended The Pennsylvania State University, where I completed a B.S. in Accounting, a minor in International Business, and 150 credits by December 2012. I completed the 150 credits in 4.5 years, and, yes, I started work 16 days after I graduated college. Somehow Christmas, New Years, and the move from Pittsburgh to DC fit in those two weeks.  I think it goes without saying that I left myself no time to study for the CPA exam before starting work.

    What about now? I’m currently in the process of taking the CPA exam. Although I would highly recommend taking as many parts as possible before starting your full-time job, I hope that by the end of this CPA adventure I can say I worked as a full-time auditor while working to obtain those three special letters at the end of my name. I’ve passed AUD (Audit), taken REG (Regulation) pending my score, and am currently studying for BEC (Business Environment and Concepts). I hope to schedule the BEC exam for the end of November, just in time to celebrate Thanksgiving, worry-free.To sum it up: I’m an experienced auditor on the road to becoming a Certified Public Accountant, and I’m here to {hopefully} help you through your CPA exam journey. Let’s do this!




    The Greater Washington Society of CPAs is proud to announce that we will be launching a Taking the Exam Blog, written by current exam takers.  The blog will be launching in November, but you can still help.  If you are taking the exam and would like to write about, please contact Brian Calvary (  if you have questions about the Exam you would like to see addressed on the Blog, email Brian as well. Watch this space for Blog entries starting in November 2014!

  • Take A Closer Look

    The “Take a Closer Look at CPAs” series highlights the wide range of opportunities that a CPA career can provide. GWSCPA hosts these regular forums for college students in DC to give you a chance to hear from CPAs in different areas of practice. Upcoming:  Partners in Local Firms Recent briefings included: Life at the Big Four Accounting Firms Federal Government Career Opportunities CPAs in the Entertainment Industry CPAs as the CFO CPAs who started their own Firms.

  • Scholarship Fund

    The Scholarship Fund of the Greater Washington Society of CPAs was established in 1963. Since it's inception, the fund has awarded more than $300,000 to accounting students attending institutions of higher education located in Washington, DC. Consider making a tax deductible contribution to the fund this year when you submit your membership renewal... or today. Checks may be made payable to GWSCPA Educational Fund-Scholarships mailed to Attn: Amy Fielder 1140 Connecticut Ave, NW, Suite 606, Washington, DC 20036.

    Students attending the universities listed below on a full time basis and meet all other criteria are eligible to apply for an award from the GWSCPA Scholarship Fund. These schools offer either a BS or BA degree in accounting or have graduate level programs that qualify for the 150 (semester) hour requirement for graduates to sit for the Uniform CPA Examination.

    Schools eligible for GWSCPA’ Scholarship Fund:

    • American University
    • Catholic University
    • Gallaudet University
    • George Washington University
    • Georgetown University
    • Howard University
    • University of the District of Columbia



    Brian Furao--American University 2014

    Heidi Friedrich--American University 2014

    Ibrahim Elmi--Howard University 2014

    Christina Montesi--George Washington University 2014

    Adriene Davis--Howard University 2013

    Oluwaseun Ogunbamise--George Washington University 2013

    Equilla Clark--Howard University 2013

    Lorraine Pascual--American University 2013

    Joseph Burns-- Howard University 2012

    Yuliya Gekhman --American University 2012

    Mark Dissen-- George Washington University 2012

    Anna Merkoulova-- American University 2012

    Christine Curley-- Georgetown University 2011

    Matthew Casey-- George Washington University 2011

    Nadia Farooqi-- George Washington University 2011

    Jeffrey Goldfond-- George Washington University 2011

    Rachel Bryan-- George Washington University 2010

    Chris Kearney-- Gallaudet University 2010

    Emily Stovicek-- American University 2010

    India Clark-- Howard University 2009

    Yuriy Kushnir --American University 2009

    Kendra Oates-- Howard University 2008

    Elizabeth Hershman --American University 2008

    Wesley Bullock-- Howard University 2007

    Siobhan Gillan-- American University 2007

    Peter Drummond --American University 2006

    Ashley Kurtz-- George Washington University 2005

    Andrea Smith-- Howard University 2005

Student Membership

Student Membership is open to any full time student pursuing a degree in accounting or another financial services area who would like to benefit from the networking and educational opportunities afforded by the Society. Student Membership is only $15/year and is often waived if you join at an event.

Students, Join Today »

Special Topics

The GWSCPA will also work with the community to fill requests from schools, colleges, and community organizations seeking CPA volunteers to address classes, assemblies, meetings, or special events.

Educator Newsletter

The GWSCPA publishes a quarterly newsletter for area accounting professors and teachers who are looking for resources for their students as well as updates that affect academics in the profession. To sign up for this electronic newsletter or for any questions about Academic Membership, contact Brian Calvary at or 202-464-6002