McKnight Doctoral Fellowship
Perhaps quite similar to many Latino Americans, my parents never pursued a Bachelor’s Degree or Graduate Degree in this country. My parents worked really hard to fund a good portion of my Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting, but funding my Master’s Degree in Accounting was out of the question since they had to help my brother pay for his Bachelor’s Degree study. Using funds from a paid internship at PricewaterhouseCoopers (a multi-national accounting firm), a few scholarships that I won, and FAFSA subsidized loan, I covered the costs of my Master’s Degree and worked full-time at PricewaterhouseCoopers that allowed me to pay back the loan. But during my Master’s Degree, one of my professors planted a seed in my heart about accounting research and a professor’s life. Throughout the program, several professors cultivated the seed by encouraging me to think more critically, read and write more effectively, and discuss research papers after class. One year after working full-time, I felt the seed grow and my heart called me to pursue a Doctorate’s Degree.
My dream is to become a professor that could produce high-quality research and inspire (i.e. sow a seed, cultivate its growth) my students to understand that no matter their current limitations or difficult background, they can attain a college education to propel them to their highest aspirations. Although the dream is very clear, the path was not. After an intense interview process with different PhD programs, I found my best opportunity at Florida State University, but that required moving to another city where it would be difficult for my parents to offer much financial support. Receiving a McKnight Doctoral Fellowship meant that I could receive the financial support that I needed to cover the unanticipated costs of moving and the doctoral degree, and receive the moral support of other Fellows in the McKnight family that have been there before and understand my struggles. Some of my future research plans include exploring the effect of financial restatements on accounting behavior, and identifying earnings management behavior in restrictive settings.