The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has chosen Rachel Daniel ’18, M’20 as a postgraduate technical assistant (PTA) for the 2021 calendar year. Daniel, a new graduate of Trinity University’s master’s program in accounting, is one of only seven students nationwide to be handpicked for the program. She will start her year-long term in January in Norwalk, Connecticut.
The FASB, founded in 1973, sets and improves financial accounting and reporting standards for public and private companies in the United States. Daniel is the third Trinity graduate to secure a FASB appointment–after Gabrielle Roe ’16, M’17 and Benjamin Dart ’13, M’15, who also served winter terms at the organization.
“It’s clear that the people who work for the FASB are some of the most brilliant minds in accounting,” Daniel says, “and to be able to have the chance to further develop my technical acumen is an honor, a privilege, and I’m incredibly excited.”
Originally from Houston, Daniel first thought she would major in mathematical finance at Trinity. After taking an accounting class, however, she found that she enjoyed the technical background of the major and a set of skills she said are applicable to almost any facet of business.
“Rachel was never content with the ‘how’–she always pressed for the ‘why,’” says Julie Persellin, Ph.D, associate professor of accounting. “She is genuinely curious about the theoretical underpinnings of accounting practice and has a unique ability to incorporate theory into practice in meaningful ways.”
On top of her Bachelor of Science with a major in accounting, Daniel also holds a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Spanish.
Daniel was an active participant in student life at Trinity, serving as vice president of the Student Government Association, Raas a Mellon undergraduate research fellow, and working on the University’s Student Managed Fund, a program where Trinity students manage a multi-million-dollar stock portfolio for course credit.
She is one of 16 graduate students who received their master’s degrees in accounting this May. The program has a 100 percent employment rate and is currently ranked in the Top 20 in CPA Exam performance from 2011 to the present, snagging the No. 11 spot just this past year.
After her year-long posting in Connecticut, Daniel will return to Houston to work full time in the audit and assurance division at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). Daniel previously completed a 10-week internship at PwC during “busy season,” which she called a great experience.
Between now and the start of her postgraduate assistantship in January, Daniel will study for the CPA exam. Looking back on her time at Trinity, Daniel says she is most appreciative of the school’s sense of community and of faculty support.
“I feel like Trinity has really prepared me for this position because Trinity doesn’t just focus on giving you the technical skills,” Daniel says. “They do an incredibly good job of laying that foundation and then adding on the extra layer of analysis, writing abilities, and communication skills that I think the FASB really values.”