Cal Poly

Grad Business

Program Description

The Master of Science in Taxation (MS Tax) at Cal Poly is a rigorous 10-month program that prepares graduates for careers in public accounting, industry and government. Classes are full-time and held on campus. Having a master’s degree is an absolute must for anyone seriously considering a successful career in the highly technical area of taxation.

Cal Poly serves as a primary recruiting school for the Big Four public accounting firms, as well as midsize and boutique firms — all of whom eagerly hire our graduates. The placement rate for our program is outstanding. Students graduating from the program also have historically excelled on the CPA examination and in their careers.

The program’s curriculum covers a broad spectrum of taxation from tax research, corporate, partnership, international, state and local to estate and gift. Students enrolled in the program also apply their knowledge in a winter internship where they receive academic credit and put their tax skills to work. They can also participate in the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic to build confidence and career readiness.

The MS Tax students enjoy small class sizes led by nationally recognized accounting scholars committed to the success of the entire cohort. This high-touch environment fosters close connections and a deep understanding of taxation. To help students build real-world experience and make connections, we developed the Graduate Tax Guest Speaker Series. The Speaker Series brings dozens of accounting and industry professionals into the classroom from top companies such as Google, EY, KPMG, PwC, Deloitte, and more. Topics discussed include advanced areas in taxation, ranging from venture capital, private equity and hedge fund partnership allocations and distributions, to the intricacies and complexities of tax provision work.

Upon conclusion of the program, graduates have a comprehensive understanding of the Internal Revenue Code, the Treasury regulations and other authorities that they can later apply to various sophisticated transactions. Graduates also have excellent tax research and communication skills, a characteristic that sets Cal Poly’s program apart from others in the field. The MS Tax students leave prepared for today’s dynamic, innovative and changing business environment.


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