17 answers

How do most people enter the profession of accounting

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17 answers

Molly’s Answer

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The most important thing to remember is to make sure you are setting yourself up to meet the educational requirements to enter the accounting industry. You are not required to be an accounting major, but typically those who are not accounting undergrad will pursue a master's degree to ensure they are meeting the educational requirements. Typically, to be recruited into an accounting firm you will need to have 150 educational credits. This is one of three requirements to becoming a CPA. The other two are work experience and passing the exam. Once you have a plan for your education, it's important to attend recruiting events and network. Most accounting firms hire interns so you should start looking early (i.e., before graduation). You can also research firms' websites to find out information about their recruiting process and even find a recruiter contact for your school and/or region!
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Jeany’s Answer

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The best way to enter the profession is to sign up for internships. You can either apply directly with the accounting firm, go through your school's Career Counseling group, or join an internship placement organization. Personally, I joined accounting clubs at school that held events with companies and I joined a group called Inroads that helped me with my resume, interviewing skills, and helped get me an internship at the company I still work for to this day, 15 years later!

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Allison’s Answer

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Accounting is a wonderful profession to join! My recommendation would be to go to a college that offers all of the credit hours needed to get a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) license. Once you're in school working towards that degree, look into Accounting Firms that have Leadership Programs and Internships for you to get more hands on experience. If you make strong connections through those opportunities, there is a great chance of a full time position to follow. Best of luck!

#accounting #pwc #pwcisgo
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Ashley’s Answer

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Hi Deja! I would talk to the firm recruiters at your school. They can answer any questions you might have about the accounting firms or the accounting professional in general. They can also inform you about any upcoming events and opportunities to meet the firms. As you begin I would definitely recommend attending as many of these events as you can so that you can really get to know the firms and find where you think you fit best! This will lead to internship offers which will turn into job opportunities. This will also allow you to meet the people that work at the firms and find mentors or make connections with future colleagues.
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Emilio’s Answer

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I think most people get into the accounting profession through experiences. A lot of people I know never thought they would go into the field of accounting, but once they took a course in accounting their interest grew. Accounting offers a lot of different career paths and there are a lot of job opportunities out there so I feel like many people like the security that the field offers.

Emilio recommends the following next steps:

  • Look into different accounting positions available
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Matthew’s Answer

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Most accountants start right after leaving school as I did. Many schools have opportunities for firms and companies to come and meet students looking to start a career in accounting. Many firms have internships you can apply for as well. You should talk to your career office or the firm recruiter to get more information. This is one of the best ways to get to meet the firms before you finish college. You can even start the interview process while you finish classes, and might even have job offers before you graduate.

Matthew recommends the following next steps:

  • Meet your your career services office to talk about internships and upcoming events.
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Raquel’s Answer

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Hi Deja!

From my experience, having internships while in school are extremely helpful if you are trying to enter into an accounting role. Internships are nice because you may realize that the particular role you are interning in is not the best fit for your future. I interned with PwC while getting my masters degree and then was offered a full time position once I finished school. I loved my internship and then accepted the offer and have been working in tax at PwC for the past 4.5 years. A lot of internship opportunities are posted on company websites or linkedin.

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Tony’s Answer

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Hey Deja,

Hope you are doing well.

Most people who interested in entering the accounting field usually start their accounting job right after finishing their education, either public accounting or accounting in industry. I believe most colleges/universities have their own career fair now where companies like Big Four will come over and tabling. That would be a great opportunity to talk to the recruiter and get to know the available recruiting schedule and career path. The firm attend these kind of career fair usually will have interview either for internship or full-time job right after the fair. So it would be a great opportunity to get an offer. And I believe most of the schools now have their own career center or something like that devoted to help students get start on their career.

Another resource I would say is go check the employer's website, sometime it has a very detailed career page you can learn how you can get a job in the firm and their expectation.

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Gabriela’s Answer

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Hi Deja,

My best advice is for you to find universities that have a good accounting program. Once there, join clubs and organizations that are accounting specific. They will help you get connected with firms and they will teach how to network. Your goal is to get in Summer Leadership programs in your Sophmore year and eventually land an internship in your Junior year. This will guarantee you getting a full time offer once you graduate.
Best of Luck
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Michelle’s Answer

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Hi Deja,

I entered into the Accounting profession by fulfilling my education requirements first. Most accounting professional complete either 150 hours or do an additional Master's degree in order to meet the requirements for sitting for the CPA (Certified Public Accountant) license exam. This is a value asset as an accounting professional. As I was going through college, I also got involved in many business and accounting related extracurricular activities. I then later interned for an accounting firm. Usually, it is the level of exposure and experience that gets people into this profession.
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James’s Answer

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Most people enter the profession via a internship or career fair.

When I was in school I went the career fair and spoke with a recruiter for a firm I was interested in. I provided my resume and was then invited to a networking event.

From there the process can vary dramatically so I can't share a ton of advice.

In my experience, I did a sophomore leadership program that lead to an internship and ultimately a job offer.

Hope this is helpful
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Danielle’s Answer

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Hi Deja,

In my experience, the best way to enter the accounting field is to enter an auditing firm upon graduating. Many schools assist their students in the recruitment process. In addition to the Big 4, there are many regional accounting firms. Getting experience as an auditor is a great way to enter the accounting profession and will set you on a a great career path.

Best wishes on your journey!
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Angela’s Answer

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I started in entry-level accounting doing just Accounts Payable with a company.  From there, I moved into Accounts Receivable and then to Accounting Clerk.   

Angela recommends the following next steps:

  • Find an entry-level position with room to grow.
Getting a CPA or working toward getting a CPA would be tremendously helpful. It’s a recognized accounting credential and also there is going to be a lot of demand for it since many CPAs are expected to retire in the next decade. Tim Z.
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Kiana’s Answer

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The usual path toward the accounting profession would be to obtain a degree in accounting or even finance. Most people need the accounting credits in order to take the CPA exam. Additionally, attending career fairs and networking with recruiters from accounting firms definitely helps with getting opportunities in the profession, such as internship and job offers.
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Lisa’s Answer

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There are two main paths to take once you have your accounting degree - public accounting and private accounting. Public accounting will generally provide a higher initial salary and a faster track to a higher salary, in exchange for a more demanding and higher hours job. You will generally also gain more knowledge and experience in a shorter time frame. Private accounting will generally provide for a more stable atmosphere, but growth opportunities are generally more limited.
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Devin’s Answer

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Hi Deja!

As a current freshman in college, I'm just starting off the bat with accounting; however, I did have a wonderful realization of what made me decide to pursue the career field.

I applied to my current college in the summer before my senior year, but I had absolutely no clue what I was going to major in (and that freaked me out!)

I decided to take a risk and take the two accounting courses that my high school offered and I fell in love with it! Everything just made sense to me and the way that accounting functions is like a dream come true to me.

Now, the college I had chose was probably one of the best decisions for me as they offered a 4+1 program (as well as being one of the better programs in the Midwest). The typical route for people pursuing this profession is to get their Bachelor's of Accounting (4 years) then continue out into a fifth year to earn their Master's of Accounting OR use the year after earning their Bachelor's to study for the CPA exam. Depending on the college you go to, though, it will vary. Mine offers 4+1, but also incorporates studying for the CPA exam towards the Master's Degree, which saves me time and money.

I would advise you to start to plan ahead and decide what kind of path you'd like to follow, and to take AP/community college courses in high school. College is expensive, but determining the route you're going to take saves you time, money, and unnecessary stress!

Good luck on your journey!
Devin Neitzel
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Devin’s Answer

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Hi Deja!

As a current freshman in college, I'm just starting off the bat with accounting; however, I did have a wonderful realization of what made me decide to pursue the career field.

I applied to my current college in the summer before my senior year, but I had absolutely no clue what I was going to major in (and that freaked me out!)

I decided to take a risk and take the two accounting courses that my high school offered and I fell in love with it! Everything just made sense to me and the way that accounting functions is like a dream come true to me.

Now, the college I had chose was probably one of the best decisions for me as they offered a 4+1 program (as well as being one of the better programs in the Midwest). The typical route for people pursuing this profession is to get their Bachelor's of Accounting (4 years) then continue out into a fifth year to earn their Master's of Accounting OR use the year after earning their Bachelor's to study for the CPA exam. Depending on the college you go to, though, it will vary. Mine offers 4+1, but also incorporates studying for the CPA exam towards the Master's Degree, which saves me time and money.

I would advise you to start to plan ahead and decide what kind of path you'd like to follow, and to take AP/community college courses in high school. College is expensive, but determining the route you're going to take saves you time, money, and unnecessary stress!

Good luck on your journey!
Devin Neitzel
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