Fiscal year 2018 has begun, and IMA’s strategic plan is well under way. This month, I’ll highlight two of our four strategic pillars: growing our CMA® (Certified Management Accountant) program and raising CMA awareness in the student/academic market. In these two strategic goals, we aren’t simply making promises—we’re delivering value in tangible terms. But you, the member, are the judge of the value proposition.

One milestone we’ve reached is expanding the CMA program through our new specialty credential, the CSCA® (Certified in Strategy and Competitive Analysis). It’s exclusively for CMAs, and earning the CSCA enhances your strategic planning and analysis skills and enables you to be a more effective strategic business partner.

More than 500 candidates have registered for the first CSCA testing window this month. The next testing window is March 2018. To help you prepare for the exam, we offer a special Learning Series with exercises, knowledge check questions, and assessments. Successful completion of the Series earns you 21 continuing professional education (CPE) credits, and passing the exam earns you an additional 30.

We’re also making strides in our student/academic outreach. Last month, IMA® hosted a successful informational breakfast at the Annual Meeting of the American Accounting Association (AAA). IMA Chair Alex Eng and Raef Lawson, vice president of Research and Policy and Professor-in-Residence, led the event, and 160 attendees received a digital copy of the annual “Education” issue of Strategic Finance. And IMA gave away a CMA “Tattoo T-shirt” to the earliest-certified CMA and the newest CMA in attendance.

The breakfast also spotlighted initiatives like IMA’s new management accounting textbook, the IMA Research Foundation, the Higher Education Endorsement Program, and the growing student pipeline for the CMA certification.

In addition to doubling the number of CMA candidates in the student market, IMA has increased the number of students who passed both parts of the exam by 65%, thanks in large part to IMA’s many student-centric programs. Many of these completers had the help of the CMA Scholarship, which covers all exam fees and review course materials. So far in 2017, IMA has granted 804 scholarships, a 210% growth over last year.

We’re also deepening our partnership with AAA’s Management Accounting Section (MAS). IMA sponsors MAS’s mid-year meeting, and we’ll cohost the MAS-IMA Teaching Case Conference. Now in its second year, the Conference recognizes outstanding case writers in the academic community.

The fiscal year may have just started, but IMA, as I hope you’ve seen, is already taking concrete steps to bring our strategic plan to life.

Please give me your thoughts on how IMA can create greater value for your membership investment.

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