State boards of accountancy are the gatekeepers of CPA licensure and are charged with protecting their state's citizens. They must also consider the effect of their decisions on the future of the profession. Ultimately, state boards decide the education and experience requirements to both sit for the CPA exam and to attain licensure. Over the years, there has been much debate regarding whether the 150-hour requirement would improve the quality of future accounting professionals or simply construct barriers to entry for economically disadvantaged individuals. Recently, the debate has shifted to whether CPA candidates should be allowed to sit for the exam after they've completed the first 120 academic credits. The overwhelming majority of professionals who have recruitment responsibilities in their organizations prefer to hire individuals with the ability to communicate well and think critically.