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The Impact of Academics

By Paul E. Juras, Ph.D., CMA, CSCA, CPA
May 1, 2021

Commencement time is upon the higher education community once again, and I’d like to focus on IMA’s academic members, who are such an important part of our organization.

 

When you look at the mission of IMA®, you’ll see that it includes providing a forum for research, education, and knowledge sharing—words that resonate for any academic. I hope you’ll agree that our academic members do so much for us as individuals as well as for our organization and the global management accounting community.

 

In their role within institutions of higher learning, educators are key influencers and tasked with helping to prepare students—the future of our organization—to succeed. They must prepare students to be future-ready to face the unknown and develop resiliency. They mentor, guide, and support students. They also provide a valuable bridge between IMA and the next generation of leaders. They help organize student chapters and show students the value of events like annual case competitions and the Student Leadership Conference, as well as other IMA opportunities, such as the CMA® (Certified Management Accountant) Scholarship and awards.

 

Beyond their role with students, academics also provide an important function for practitioners. Practice is looking to the future. Through their research and writing, academics can provide unbiased guidance on facing the challenges ahead. On the research side of IMA, academics have authored white papers, Statements on Management Accounting, and C-suite reports. They also provide valuable contributions to the IMA Educational Case Journal (IECJ®) and Management Accounting Quarterly, and have won awards for their articles in Strategic Finance.

 

I’m proud of all IMA does in return by offering opportunities that many academics have benefited from: the ability to take the CMA exam for free; grants from the IMA Research Foundation to fund research on topics of interest to our members; publishing opportunities; cases, podcasts, and other resources for use in the classroom; recognition programs to award excellence in teaching, research, and contributions to IMA; and more.

 

Each of us probably has at least one story about a teacher who had a positive impact on our personal or professional life. I know I do: His name is Thomas Taylor. He engaged me in my local IMA chapter, and he was one of the first people I contacted when I became IMA Chair, just to let him know where his influence led me. Maybe you could reach out to whoever that person is for you. As an educator, I always enjoy hearing from students about whatever impact I may have had on their future.

 

I welcome your comments at paul.juras@imanet.org.

 

Paul E. Juras, Ph.D., CMA, CSCA, CPA, is the Jefferson Vander Wolk Chair of Management Accounting and Operational Performance at Babson College and Chair of the IMA Global Board of Directors. ­Follow him on LinkedIn, or Twitter, @pauljuras.
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