Accounting Degree Adds up to Success for Outstanding Graduate Jack Kelly

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – For Jack Kelly ’21, his decision to earn a Bachelor of Accounting from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi has paid dividends. The atmosphere of the Island campus, combined with solid family support, created the best-suited learning environment said Kelly, who hails from Plano, Texas. His effortless retention of accounting studies, leadership qualities, and faculty accolades led Kelly to be selected as the fall 2021 College of Business Outstanding Graduate. It’s an honor sponsored by the TAMU-CC Office of the Provost.

While in high school, Kelly initially thought he might want to follow in his father’s footsteps and take up a career in law enforcement, but as he neared graduation, Kelly realized a degree in business, and specifically from the College of Business at TAMU-CC, was the perfect fit.

“I trusted that Texas A&M-Corpus Christi would be the steppingstone I needed to push me into the direction of my future career pursuits,” Kelly said. “I’m thankful for the confidence that the Island campus has instilled in me, and I’m excited to begin my professional career.”

At TAMU-CC, Kelly quickly found his niche for accounting, enjoying how it was reliable and straightforward. He mastered courses such as Financial Accounting, Managerial Accounting, Federal Income Tax, Cost Accounting, and many others. Kelly’s knack for the subject shows in his impressive 4.0 GPA in his major, 3.7 GPA overall.

Dr. Matt Starliper, TAMU-CC Assistant Professor of Accounting, expressed how he knew from the beginning that Kelly was going to be exceedingly successful in the accounting program. Starliper recounts Kelly’s sharp recollection of the material, leadership qualities, initiative to attend office hours, and encouragement of his peers to join him during office hours.

“Jack is not afraid to take on difficult challenges and is willing to stretch himself to reach for new experiences,” Starliper said.

For his Accounting Internship course, Kelly earned a position with Mira’s Sports & More in accounts receivable. Under the supervision of Rachel Dimas, Financial Associate at Mira’s Sports & More, Kelly gained valuable real-world experience with accounts receivable documents, records, invoices, and the use of accounting software. Always willing to go beyond and learn new tasks, Kelly left his mark at the local business.

“I have been very impressed by Jack’s professionalism and his great organizational skills,” Dimas said. “I can’t wait to see what he does in the future, but he will always have a job with me.”   

Wanting to show appreciation to his campus and fellow Islanders, Kelly became an accounting tutor for Islander student-athletes. He was also elected Vice President for the Student Accounting Society. Kelly also trained to be certified in Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) to help low-income individuals and families, along with servicemembers, file their taxes at no cost.

“Being an Islander is important to me,” Kelly said. “Choosing to attend TAMU-CC, to be seven hours away from my family and friends, has allowed me to meet and grow friendships with my peers here through classes and student organizations.”

While in school, Kelly also participated in multiple mission trips to help repair homes of the elderly and disabled and teach youth bible classes in Costa Rica.

Kelly will walk the stage with his fellow graduates on Dec. 11, at the American Bank Center. Upon graduation, Kelly has already secured a job with Clifton Larson Allen LLP in Dallas and has applied to TAMU-CC Master of Accounting (MAcc) with the goal of earning his Certified Public Accountant certification.

“I am thankful that during my college experience I have had family and friends that helped me through the entire process,” Kelly said. “It’s a blessing to have found a career that I enjoy, and I’m excited to build upon.”