May 21, 2008

Accounting student wins prestigious scholarship

by Sun Min

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- An accounting student at Southern Illinois University Carbondale has won a National Association of Black Accountants (NABA) scholarship. Winners must have high GPAs and leadership experience.

Fresnel Houecande of the Republic of Benin, a School of Accountancy student in the College of Business and Administration, will receive the prize at the NABA conference in Atlanta next month.

"I am very excited about this honor. I encourage all students to get involved in registered student organizations. They are great resources," said Houecande, president of the SIUC chapter of NABA.

"Fresnel is very deserving of this award. He is a wonderful leader and a stellar student," said Donna Margolis, director of the college's placement center.

"Fresnel is a top-notch student and an amazing individual. We are proud to call him one of our own," said Marcus D. Odom, director of the School of Accountancy.

Houecande returns the compliment. "I am really thankful for Donna Margolis. Her coaching and support have been invaluable to me. I am also grateful for Dr. Odom and the College of Business faculty for their undivided attention to their students. I think the college offers more than just a degree to its students. It prepares them for careers," he said. "I landed three years ago from Benin (West Africa) to SIU because of its diversity but the college offered me much more than that. In just three years, I have learned so much. We are so lucky here at SIU where we have one of the best business schools in the country."

Houecande, along with accounting student Gloria Hounsinou, also received regional NABA scholarships. Houecande, Hounsinou and accounting student Victoria Young will attend next month's national convention where they'll sit in on leadership classes. The trip is sponsored by Boeing.

Since its inception, NABA has provided millions of dollars in scholarship funds to deserving students. Through the generous contributions of individuals, groups and organizations that share NABA's desire to break through the economic barrier minorities often experience, NABA has offered scholarships on a national, regional and local level.