Accounting Degrees in Maine

Updated January 11, 2023

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Maine's higher education landscape and diverse economy create strong opportunities for aspiring accountants. Discover what the Pine Tree State has to offer with this career guide. is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Augusta, Maine in autumn Credit: DenisTangneyJr / E+ / Getty Images

Maine's natural beauty and rich heritage attract tens of millions of visitors each year. The state has plenty to offer those looking to lay down roots: Maine is a safe, family-friendly destination with a healthy economic environment.

According to a 2022 economic profile published by IBISWorld, Maine has consistently been a top-performing state in terms of economic growth.

Over the five-year period leading up to 2022, Maine ranked 12th in the United States for trailing gross domestic product (GDP) growth.

Maine's Center for Workforce Research and Information lists accountants and auditors among the state's high-wage, in-demand career paths. Emerging accountants can earn relevant degrees at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

If you wish to pursue a career as a CPA, Maine might be the state for you. Explore this guide of what Maine has to offer as a place to prepare for, launch, and build an accounting career.

Maine at a Glance




Average Annual Temperature: 41.0℉

Average Annual Precipitation: 42.2 inches

Number of Higher Learning Institutions


Per Capita Income


Accountants in Maine


Sources: Current Results, NCES, U.S. Census ACS, BLS

Why Go to School for Accounting in Maine?

Maine has a long history of prioritizing education. State lawmakers instituted higher education appropriations during the first legislative session in Maine history. Today, Maine continues to finance higher education institutions with tax revenues at rates that favorably reflect nationwide averages.

Student outcome data reflects high levels of general satisfaction with the Maine college experience. According to Educate Maine, a strong 64% of Maine students graduate within six years of enrolling in a higher education program.

Major institutions including the University of Maine also sport student retention rates that compare well with overall national averages.

Students in Maine can connect with funding opportunities through the Finance Authority of Maine (FAME). Notably, FAME also provides financial support to entrepreneurs and businesses, which could make it relevant to Maine-based professionals after graduation.

Degree-seekers in Maine can earn credentials on campus, online, and through hybrid programs that combine in-person with internet-based learning. If you plan to work or become a certified public accountant (CPA) in Maine, attending a college based in the state can help you build your network. Many accounting programs offer field training opportunities, which also function as excellent sources of job leads for students nearing graduation.

Education Statistics for Maine

Given its small population, Maine has a relatively large number of degree-granting institutions. The state's educational achievement statistics reflect the strong presence of higher education opportunities throughout Maine.

In virtually every category covered in the table below, Maine either keeps pace with or exceeds national averages:

Higher Education Statistics Maine Data National Data

Four-Year Colleges



Two-Year Colleges



Students Enrolled in Distance Education



Postsecondary Education Appropriations per Full-Time Student



Tax Revenue Allocated to Higher Education



Adults Over 25 With an Associate Degree



Adults Over 25 With a Bachelor's Degree



Adults Over 25 With a Graduate Degree or Higher



Sources: NCES, SHEEO, U.S. Census ACS

Accreditation for Maine Schools

Students should consider schools for accounting only if those schools hold accreditation. Accreditation makes it easier to transfer and to receive financial aid.

The New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) is the accrediting authority in Maine. NECHE also endorses schools in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Programmatic accreditation is a bonus accolade that also recognizes quality. Examples of agencies that provide these endorsements include the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) and the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

Delivery Formats for an Accounting Degree in Maine

Delivery formats are increasingly important. A growing number of institutions both in Maine nationally have dramatically expanded online learning options.

Choosing the delivery format that best matches your learning style and preferences can have a significant impact on your academic success. Consider the advantages of each of the three main options:

On-Campus Programs

In Maine, students attend exclusively campus-based programs at rates that exceed the national average. Maine students attend campus-based programs at a rate of 31.6%.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the national average of undergraduate students enrolled in campus-only education sits at 29%.

The traditional college campus experience offers different — and possibly more frequent — networking advantages than online-only study. On campus, students can interact with peers and faculty members with much greater ease and immediacy.

Online Programs

Online accounting programs offer both cost advantages and flexibility benefits. Many online courses allow students to engage with course materials whenever their outside schedules allow. As such, learners balancing school with work and other commitments tend to favor online formats.

Hybrid Programs

Hybrid programs are a fusion of campus- and internet-based learning. They tend to appeal to students seeking to combine the traditional college experience with the convenience of the online classroom.

In Maine, the percentage of college students enrolled in at least one online course is nearly even with the national average. This indicates strong support for blended learning formats in Maine institutions.

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Paying for Your Accounting Degree

If you plan to attend a Maine school for accounting and need help meeting the costs, you have two main financial aid options. These include non-repayable and repayable assistance programs.

Non-repayable sources include scholarships, fellowships, and grants, among others. These options typically provide limited funding but benefit students because they do not require future repayment.

Repayable assistance primarily includes federal and private loans, which create long-term debt. Consider those options as a last resort.

In-State Versus Out-of-State Tuition

In Maine, public colleges often charge higher tuition rates to students from out of state. In-state students have made ongoing contributions to Maine's higher education network through their tax payments.

However, tuition exchanges known as reciprocity programs can offer lower out-of-state costs. Reciprocity programs allow eligible learners from neighboring states to qualify for in-state rates at Maine public institutions.

Maine participates in a reciprocity agreement through the New England Board of Higher Education (NEBHE). NEBHE's reciprocity program extends to students in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Cost of Living in Maine

If you plan to attend college or earn a CPA in Maine, carefully consider the local cost of living. In general, Maine has higher living costs than the typical U.S. locality.

The cost of living index uses a baseline of 100 to represent the average cost of living in the U.S. As of 2022, Maine's cost of living score is 115. Maine is, on average, a 15% more expensive place to live.

Groceries, utilities, and transportation are all priced only slightly above average in Maine. The high cost of living primarily results from housing, which has an index score of 136.6 as of 2022.

Careers for Accounting Graduates in Maine

Maine has a dynamic, service-oriented economy that creates a strong market for professionals with accounting expertise. Businesses of all sizes in every industry need bookkeepers and accountants to track transactions, prepare financial documents, and help manage tax payments.

According to data published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Maine's top five nonfarm employment sectors included the following, as of September 2022:

  • Education and health services
  • Trade, transportation, and utilities
  • Government
  • Professional and business services
  • Leisure and hospitality

For emerging accounting professionals seeking to establish themselves, these industries are a strong source of employment leads.

Many professional services firms with operations in Maine also employ accountants, auditors, and financial support staff to meet client needs on a contract basis.

The following sections explore accounting careers in Maine in more detail:

Popular Accounting Careers in Maine

Compliance Officer

Compliance officers examine financial records and evaluate company operations to ensure they adhere to all legal requirements. The role is particularly prevalent in organizations that receive government contracts or operate in regulated industries. Duties also extend to internal operating standards: Compliance officers also make sure business activities meet established corporate policies.

Job Outlook in Maine (2020-30): 0 (no projected change)

Sources: Projections Central

Budget Analyst

Budget analysts work in both the private and public sectors. They assist in organizational budgeting processes and review preliminary documents to ensure their accuracy. Budget analysts also monitor spending, creating budget reports and tracking compliance with projections. Many budget analysts also apply their advanced insights to identify savings opportunities.

Job Outlook in Maine (2020-30): +4.5%

Sources: Projections Central

Personal Financial Advisor

Personal financial advisors help individual clients plan for their present and future financial needs. They recommend savings and investment programs based on each client's preferences and tolerance for risk. Financial advisors also guide estate, tax, and retirement planning.

Job Outlook in Maine (2020-30): -1%

Sources: Projections Central

Maine Employment Trends

Projected Job Growth for Accountants
Job Availability Maine National

2020 Employment



2030 Projected Employment



Projected Job Growth, 2020-30



Sources: Projections Central

Accounting Salaries by Career
Career Maine Employment Maine Average Annual Salary National Average Annual Salary

Associate Degree Recommended

Bookkeeping and Auditing Clerks




Credit Counselors




Payroll Clerks




Bachelor's Degree Recommended

Compliance Officers




Cost Estimators




Property Appraisers and Assessors




Securities, Commodities, and Financial Services Sales Agents




Tax Examiners and Collectors




Tax Preparers




Master's Degree Recommended

Accountants and Auditors




Budget Analysts




Financial Analysts




Financial Managers




Personal Financial Advisors




Sources: BLS OEWS

Accounting professionals planning to work in Maine may want to invest in a bachelor's or master's degree. The career paths open to associate degree-holders pay salaries that lag behind national averages. Given Maine's high cost of living, this trade-off does not favor workers.

Meanwhile, multiple accounting and finance specializations available to professionals with bachelor's and master's degrees pay higher-than-average salaries in Maine. These include property appraisers and personal financial advisors. Compared to nationwide averages, Maine property appraisers and financial advisors earn salary premiums of about 43% and 12%, respectively.

Requirements for CPAs in Maine

In the United States, state-level agencies administer CPA licensure. The Maine Board of Accountancy is Maine's licensing agency.

Each state maintains its own eligibility and licensing standards. Some details vary among jurisdictions.

Maine's inclusive standards do not involve citizenship, residency, or Social Security Number (SSN) requirements. The state also sets its accounting education requirements at more accessible levels to make eligibility more attainable.

Maine balances its accessible education standards with more rigorous professional experience requirements. First-time candidates for a CPA in Maine must also sit their licensure examination within 120 days of completing their degree.

The following checklist summarizes Maine's key CPA exam and licensure requirements:

  • No age, citizenship, residency, or SSN requirements apply.
  • You must complete at least 150 credit hours of college education and hold a bachelor's degree.
  • At least 15 semester hours or the equivalent must cover accounting, auditing, and ethics.
  • You need at least two years of professional experience that directly involve advanced accounting or auditing proficiencies.
  • You must take your first CPA exam in Maine within 120 days of completing your bachelor's degree.

Questions About Accounting in Maine

  • How do I become a CPA in Maine?

    To become a CPA in Maine, you need 150 credit hours of higher education, a bachelor's degree, and two years of professional accounting experience. These basic qualifications enable you to take the state's CPA examination.

  • Is accounting a good career in Maine?

    Maine's Center for Workforce Information and Resource includes accountants and auditors in its official list of high-paying in-demand jobs. Some accounting and financial specializations, including real estate appraisers and financial advisors, pay higher-than-average salaries in Maine.

  • How much do accountants earn in Maine?

    BLS data from May 2021 cites $72,020 as the average (mean) salary of an accountant or auditor in Maine. Note that the figure includes all professionals working as accountants or auditors. It does not correct for licensure or other valuable professional credentials.

  • What accountant courses near me in Maine are there?

    Maine's higher education network offers accounting courses and programs at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Learners can connect with relevant in-person and online study opportunities with relative ease.

Page last reviewed on November 20, 2022

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