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Plante & Moran's First UNITE Multicultural Leadership Expo Gathers Business Students and Faculty Advisors for Inside Look at the Accounting Profession


Southfield, MI
– Plante & Moran, PLLC, one of the nation’s largest public accounting and business consulting firms, hosted its first ever interactive multicultural leadership expo called UNITE on June 3rd at the firm’s Southfield office. 24 students and two faculty advisors from colleges in Michigan, Illinois and Ohio attended the day-long event, which was geared to college students and advisors who are actively involved in multicultural business organizations on their respective campuses. According to Paula Frerichs, recruiting director at Plante & Moran, the event concept grew out of the desire to attract more minority students to a career in accounting.

“We are committed to increasing minority membership in the profession and at Plante & Moran, and we believe that outreach through hands on activities such as UNITE help to serve this purpose, “explains Frerichs.

The student chapters of the International Student Organization, Omega Delta Fraternity, National Association of Black Accountants and the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance & Accounting were represented.

“Our goal for UNITE was for attendees, who are business organization leaders on campus, to gain new skills and ideas to bring back to campus that can help them and their organization members prepare for careers in accounting. We also wanted students and faculty to acquire a better understanding of the advantages that the study of accounting brings, and the broad array of careers available in the public accounting profession, regardless of whether attendees choose to pursue a career at Plante & Moran or elsewhere,” continues Frerichs.

Session topics ranged from leadership skills, team building and the recruiting process, to careers in public accounting and consulting. The event concluded with an offsite game of laser tag and a raffle, with student organizations winning cash prizes.

Plante & Moran Managing Partner, Gordon Krater, CPA, who took part in the event as a guest speaker, was particularly impressed with UNITE participants and supports another UNITE event.

“Oftentimes, younger groups like this are pretty quiet, but the UNITE students were very inquisitive and asked thought provoking questions about the profession, the firm and the historical and real-life situations that combine to make a corporate culture,” notes Krater. “They were genuinely curious about the public accounting world and they had done their homework. I would definitely like to see Plante & Moran continue hosting UNITE on an annual basis.”

About Plante & Moran, PLLC
Plante & Moran is among the nation’s largest certified public accounting and business advisory firms, providing clients with tax, audit, risk management, financial, technology, business consulting, and wealth management services. Plante & Moran has a staff of more than 1,600 professionals in 21 offices throughout Michigan, Ohio, and Illinois with international offices in Shanghai, China; Monterrey, Mexico; and Mumbai, India. Plante & Moran has been recognized by a number of organizations, including FORTUNE magazine, as one of the country’s best places to work.

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