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Thursday, May 23, 2013 - Accounting grad enjoys bringing clarity to his clients

If you think there’s always an easy right-or-wrong answer with accounting, you haven’t met Korry Bates, MAcc ’10, SBA ’09. Bates, an associate in Risk Assurance with public services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) in Detroit, says he was attracted to the field because it requires an abundance of critical thinking.

“There’s quite a bit of subjectivity in our work,” he says of his work at PwC. “In fact, we provide the greatest value in those gray areas.”

Bates’ job involves making certain that data-processing and related technology used by his clients in the automotive and manufacturing industries does what it’s supposed to.

 

“When you rely heavily on information technology (IT), it creates both opportunity and risk,” he says. “I audit system applications to make sure those risks are being properly controlled.”

 

The job involves understanding both IT and accounting so that he can bridge the gap between those fields. He notes that the OU master’s program coursework helped him build that bridge.

 

Today, Bates remains a familiar face on the campus as a recruiter for PwC and a still-active participant in the school’s chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA), which he co-founded.

 

“I have a vested interest in NABA,” he acknowledges, adding, “I’ve been a part of it since the start, so its ongoing success is important to me.”

 

He credits NABA for many of his key professional connections. He taps into that network when volunteering for Detroit Public Schools as a speaker at high school career days.

 

“Every high school student I talk to has a dream to become more than they are, but they don’t always know how to achieve those dreams or have a role model to help them see what they can accomplish,” he says. “I tell them that if I could do it, they can do it, and I try to connect them to people in my networks who can help.”

 

Published in the Fall 2012 issue of OU Magazine

By Sandra Beckwith, a Fairport, N.Y.-based freelance writer