The UConn Chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA) attended the 39th Annual NABA National Convention and Expo on June 10, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Four members were afforded the opportunity to attend: Brandon Madden ’16, co-president, Kenny Okafor ’17, chief financial officer, Shantaye Taylor ’17, co-president, and Danielle Wellington ’15, immediate past president.
This conference marks UConn NABA’s second consecutive national appearance and the furthest distance from the University that the chapter has traveled thus far. Scholars from across the nation gathered to forge new bonds and strengthen existing ones. In the midst of all the excitement, scholars were able to focus and conduct business efficiently.
Student reflection is often the most rewarding outcome of attending a NABA conference. The old Vegas saying goes, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” but, for all intents and purposes, we will spare the quote as a few scholars wanted to share their experiences. Okafor states, “I developed professionally and personally by networking with representatives from several companies.” In addition, Kenny spoke on his relationship with the Chapter, “This experience strengthened my relationship with other members in the UConn Chapter… We grew together and it showed the value of teamwork, communication, and professionalism.”
Taylor also had a few memorable experiences to share. Taylor said, “The conference has not only allowed me to enhance my leadership skills and professionalism, but has given me the opportunity to network with a great amount of professionals from various companies.”
It is clear the NABA National Conference is a positive catalyst in the careers of young black accountants. The UConn NABA Chapter is grateful for their ability to attend the national conference and looks to make their appearance annual.
It would be unforgiving to not mention the ever generous resources and companies that made UConn’s trip possible. The Chapter would like to extend a special thanks to Deloitte, EY, Liberty Mutual, the UConn School of Business’ Office of Diversity Initiatives and Accounting Department. We’d also like to thank the many private donors that participated in the Chapter’s Ignite initiative