michael-cahill2Meet Our Youngest Board Member

At 26 years old, Michael Cahill has already raised money for student scholarships, recruited students for jobs and mentored students.

Michael Cahill, ’12, M.A.S. ’13, joins the Northern Illinois University Alumni Association Board of Directors as its youngest member to make the university a better place than when he left.

“I believe that understanding the student perspective when making decisions is key to accomplishing goals for the university,” Cahill said. “I can provide a recent graduate’s perspective, while also keeping the big picture in mind.”

The certified public accountant says he wants to continue to make Northern Illinois University a place where students have the opportunities to be successful in and out of the classroom because the university gave him the skills, confidence and support that he needed.

At only 26 years old, Cahill has already given back to the student population. He has raised money for student scholarships by participating in the Red and Black gala, has recruited students for jobs and internships as a senior consultant for Ernst & Young, has been a keynote speaker for the Department of Accountancy and has mentored students.

The Downers Grove resident has been recognized as an outstanding student and alumnus. In 2016, he won the Outstanding Young Alumni Award from the NIU Alumni Association.

While at NIU, he maintained a 4.0 GPA and graduated summa cum laude, earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accountancy during his 4 ½ years on campus.

He was nominated by the Department of Accountancy and selected for a prestigious one-year postgraduate position at the Financial Accounting Standards Board, the organization that sets the accounting standards for the nation.

His student involvement included serving as president of the Student Alumni Association and participating on the College of Business Strategic Planning Council and the College of Business Dean’s Student Advisory Board.

With his experience managing derivatives, treasury and financial risk management projects and reviewing legal agreements for Ernst & Young, Cahill said, he has a solid understanding of university financial statements and funding.

“As an alumnus, I feel an affinity with the university and want to continue to give back, pay if forward, in order to continue to make NIU a place where students have the opportunities that they need to be successful,” he said.