Accounting Student Becomes Third Generation MCOB Graduate
Posted on December 10, 2018
Anna Dudley had no idea what her college major would be when she graduated from Mobile’s St. Paul’s Episcopal School, then began her freshman year at the University of South Alabama.
Now, she has the unique distinction of being the third generation of her family to graduate from South with an accounting degree from the Mitchell College of Business. Her mother, Michelle Dudley, is currently the executive director of practice management with USA Health, and her grandmother, Vivian Chateau, was a partner in a Mobile accounting firm before she retired.
“I came to South because it was located near my family and, because my mother and grandmother had gone here, it just felt right for me,” Dudley said. “By the time I had to declare my major, I knew I could succeed in accounting because of what my mother and my grandmother achieved in their careers.”
Recently, her mother honored Dudley's grandmother by establishing the Vivian Vann Chateau Undergraduate Endowed Scholarship in Accounting. The scholarship was established under the Mitchell-Moulton Scholarship Initiative, which matched the donation. Michelle Dudley said it was a wonderful opportunity to double the impact for future accounting students while helping to spark interest and the desire for others to support USA.
That spirit of giving back led Anna Dudley to volunteer in an annual Mitchell College of Business program where accounting students help prepare tax returns. The IRS works closely with the program, which gives accounting students a highly valued accomplishment for their resumes.
“The experience was super rewarding, and I learned a lot of hands-on tax stuff,” Dudley said.
She described it as one of many happy experiences at the Mitchell College of Business, where she spent many challenging, yet enjoyable, hours using the Joseph and Rebecca Mitchell Learning Resource Center. The library center offers MCOB students a congenial place to study, engage in research and collaborate on individual or group projects.
“Being a business student in the Mitchell College of Business, there is a lot of camaraderie among the business students. I have good memories of working in the library. I’ve really enjoyed my time here, and I’m sentimental about it,” she said.
With her diploma in hand, Dudley plans to spend the remainder of December with her family, then devote time to a job and her favorite hobby.
“I worked at an outdoor store through college, and I definitely love to hike. I hope to hike as much of the Appalachian Trail as possible during the coming months,” she said.
Then, she’ll return to South for extra classroom hours required before taking the examination to be licensed as a certified public accountant.
“After that, I’ll start working on a master’s degree in accounting,” she said. “A part of me wants to live in a bigger city for a while, perhaps someplace where there is more hiking.”
Still, she hopes to return to Mobile eventually because it “is a really great place to grow up with the bay, the water and the nearby beaches.” And, there’s always the possibility of more education.
“I would be open to going for my Ph.D.,” she admitted. “It would be super challenging, but I like school enough that I won’t rule it out.”
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