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Becoming an Accountant

Becoming an Accountant

Becoming an accountant is life changing. It is an incredibly diverse profession that can open the door to a multitude of job opportunities. Ottawa University understands the complexities of the field and the value your education holds to your future. That’s why our accelerated online accounting degrees focus on developing skilled financial professionals who can apply tested accounting principles with strong analytics. We give you the tools and knowledge to become successful financial practitioners who understand contemporary business and can effectively counsel upper management when making important financial decisions. Take a closer look at our accelerated online degrees.

What Do Accountants Do?

Dr. Stephen Weiss, Ph.D., CPA and Associate Professor of Ottawa University’s Angell Snyder School of Business shares his passion for becoming an accountant, “the way we think of accounting at OU is it represents a fundamental part of everyday life. OU believes every person in the world employs the principles of accounting at least once in their lifetime (probably even more)”.

Dr. Weiss is also the lead faculty in accounting at Ottawa University in Wisconsin. He further discusses the significance of applying the accounting skills gained from our program, “the application of accounting can be as simple as checking how much money is in your bank account to how much cash was spent on entertainment last month. Or more commonly, how accounting helps businesses track small to large-scale transactions for decision-making purposes. You see, accounting is everywhere, and it will never go out of style. Some say accounting is the most recession-proof job out there”.

What Degrees Do You Need to Be an Accountant?

There is no doubt the accounting industry holds a promising future. If you have a desire to learn new technology and skills, this could be the perfect fit for you! Dr. Weiss discusses the impact our degrees have on students wishing to pursue a career in accounting, “OU offers a Bachelor’s degree in accounting (BAcc), a Master’s degree in Accountancy (MAcc), and an accounting concentration. The Bachelor’s degree and the MAcc program were developed to fully prepare students for careers as professional accountants in public practice, industry, government, and not-for-profit organizations. The MAcc program was specifically designed to help students reach the 150-hour educational requirement to pursue the CPA examination in most states”.

Bachelor of Arts in Accountancy (BAcc)

Nearly every entry-level accounting job will require a Bachelor’s degree in a major closely related to accounting, such as math, economics, or finance. The most relevant degree is a Bachelor's in Accounting. Our accelerated online degree is based on the premise accounting is a field for professionals who know how to make sense of the bottom line to keep the wheels of business turning. In addition to developing skills in financial accounting, the degree equips you in problem-solving, decision-making, systems analysis, and stakeholder communication. You will be exposed to the latest accounting trends while gaining a strong foundation in economics and business ethics.

Master of Accountancy (MAcc)

Earning a Master of Accountancy will greatly improve your job prospects and opportunity for advancement in the field. Ottawa University recognizes the importance that a graduate degree in accounting holds for your future, which is why there is an opportunity to earn a BAcc and MAcc through a concurrent degree program that is completed in just five years. OU’s graduate degree for accounting is a 30-hour online degree to further help you comply with the 150-hour educational requirement to sit for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam in most states.

MBA with Accounting Concentration

Another option for entering the field of accounting while preparing for positions in management is earning a Master in Business Administration degree with a concentration in accounting. The MBA will help you gain real-world education and problem-solving skills you need to affect your organization’s outlook in a management or expert role, while the accounting concentration helps you build a strong background and understanding of accounting principles to inform leadership from a financial perspective.

What Can You Do with an Accounting Degree?

Accounting is a timeless profession and can be found everywhere. For example, accountants can work in public practice, industry, government, and the not-for-profit sector. This diverse field includes a wide variety of in-demand jobs such as:

  • Auditor

inspects a company’s financial records and checks for accuracy and reliability

  • Information and Technology Accountant

manages the system an organization uses to organize and report financial data

  • Forensic Accountant

uses accounting skills to provide an expert opinion on legal matters in a court of law

  • Managerial Accountant

analyzes costs and profits and plans and prepares financial reports for internal employees

  • Controller

supervises an accounting department at a company and oversees high-level financial strategies

  • Chief Financial Officer (CFO)

helps a company make informed financial and business decisions based on in-depth knowledge of financial management, performance, business strategy, and risk management  

  • Senior Financial Analyst

assesses the financial health of a business and guides it in decisions about expending money to attain profit

How Much Does an Accountant Make?

An accountant’s earning potential is quite impressive, with an average of $73,560 in 2020, nearly 34% higher than the average salary for all workers. Depending on the specific role, however, your salary could be higher. For example, financial analysts earned over $83,000 and top executives averaged over $107,000 in 2020. Interestingly, graduates with a Master of Accountancy have even higher earning potential than those with a master’s in finance, and a master’s degree can increase your salary by 23% over a bachelor’s degree.

Dr. Weiss asks future students “if you have not yet moved forward with your education, what is holding you back? While you cannot travel to the past and begin again, you can start now and build a new future! With that in mind, why not look toward accounting to enhance your professional career. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the need for accountants and auditors will jump 7% in the next 10 years”.

Start Your Accounting Career!

Ottawa University’s highly competitive accounting program in Wisconsin and online blends courses in auditing and financial, managerial, and tax accounting and is taught by highly qualified experts in their field, such as Dr. Weiss. With campuses in Kansas City, Milwaukee, and Phoenix, the online program is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), meeting or exceeding the high merits and criteria set by both organizations.

Dr. Weiss looks ahead to a bright future for accountants when stating, “for most of us, we are glad to see the end to a tumultuous 2021 and look forward to a prosperous New Year. Perhaps you desire for things to become normal again or you are all right with the new normal. Whatever camp you belong to, it has never been a better time to improve yourself and learn new skills to help advance your professional career. Remember, YOU control 2022! At Ottawa University (OU), we help traditional and nontraditional students Prepare for a Life of Significance. This is our motto and mission. Will 2022 be your year to prepare for a life of significance?”

Let’s make 2022 the Year of the Accountant!

See Also:

10 Best Accounting Skills

Top 7 Accounting Jobs

5 Key Accounting Trends

Posted: 02/17/2022
Updated: 02/17/2022 by OU Online
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