UAB Student Center for the Public Trust receives Golden Star Chapter honor, individual awards

A student accounting organization has been nationally recognized for leading with excellence and ethics on campus.
Written by: Savannah Koplon
Media contact: Alicia Rohan

 Stream SCPTstudentawardsThe University of Alabama at Birmingham Student Center for the Public Trust (UAB SCPT) at the Collat School of Business received both chapter honors and awards for individual members from the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy Center for the Public Trust.

UAB’s chapter was named a 2021-22 Golden Star Chapter, an honor bestowed on chapters that lead with excellence and ethics on their campuses. Nationally, the Student Center for the Public Trust has 52 chapters, and UAB was one of only 13 to receive this honor.

“UAB SCPT’s mission is to promote the development of strong ethical values and the encouragement of ethical leadership, since a solid foundation in ethical values is a fundamental requirement of any profession,” said UAB SCPT Faculty Advisor Maria Athienitis. “The Golden Star Status award reaffirms the time and effort UAB SCPT has dedicated in accomplishing this mission.”

Established in 2005 by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy in the wake of numerous corporate accounting scandals, the NASBA Center for the Public Trust is a non-profit organization that champions the public trust by advancing ethical leadership in business, institutions and organizations.

Each chapter must meet certain criteria to be eligible for the honor. In addition to having elected officers and regular chapter meetings, Golden Star Chapters must participate in approved community-service activities, promote StudentCPT ethics competitions and participate in the StudentCPT Leadership Conference.

“We look forward to more years of complementing UAB’s exceptional academic instruction by equipping students to maintain the highest standards of integrity and address complex ethical challenges in their future careers,” said Bradley Pinkerton, vice president of the UAB SCPT.

In addition, Chen Song, senior instructor in the Department of Accounting and Finance, and accounting student Carissa Peters both received the 2022 Being a Difference Award for displaying ethical leadership.

“Ethics are the cornerstone of the accounting industry,” Song said. “As educators, we should hold ourselves to higher ethical standards. I’m deeply honored and grateful to receive this award. I believe that doing the right thing when no one is looking is the highest praise. The peace of mind and the trust you build are worth everything.”

Peters called the award “one of the greatest honors I have ever received.”

“I am not usually speechless, however, trying to put into words what this award means to me has left me just that — speechless,” she said. “Honor, ethics and integrity are characteristics that unequivocally embody what it means to be an accountant, and having those characteristics recognized by others gives me a sense of pride that I have never felt before.”