Considering accounting as a career

<p>I was doing some thinking about college and I realized I don't want to major in what I originally settled for. "Passions" and "interests"; I don't really have those. It doesn't really matter what I go into; I'd just like to study hard and find a job that's secure, makes at least ninety grand a year, and provides time to raise a family. (Is that too idealistic?)</p>

<p>I was looking at some business careers and the prospect of studying to be and being an accountant. The only thing is that the school I want to go to (UCSD) doesn't offer a bachelor's degree in accounting. They don't even offer a bachelor's degree in business. Can I major in say, Economics, and still be an accountant after getting an M.B.A? I'm not sure how it all works. Will it be harder to find a job that way?</p>

<p>What other jobs in business can I get? I was looking at careers like commercial banker, venture capitalist, finance analyst, etc. etc. but it's hard to see what pros and cons each one has that distinguishes it from the other. Can anyone give suggestions as to what might be suitable for my preferences?</p>

<p>PS - I would like to add that the idea of being an accountant really, really appeals to me. The job market is attractive, the salary is fair (with room to advance!), and the hours/week isn't bad. Also, it provides you with the knowledge of how businesses work; the idea of starting one's own business is pretty nice. If UCSD had a major in accounting, I would go for it. The only thing is, I don't know if I can even go into the field or find a job without a bachelor's in accounting; I heard that companies tend not to hire those people. If this isn't the case, then what should I major in in undergrad?</p>

<p>im in the same boat as you, i dont care what i do as long as i make decent money and more importantly live in the part of the country that i desire (beach town).</p>

<p>Thats why i choose accounting. You should go to SDSU and do one of those 5 year BS MS accounting programs.. although you wont be living in la jolla with blacks 500 feet away like at UCSD.. but the big 4 recruit at sdsu and you will have a ton of fun going there</p>

<p>Uh is it just me or did sdmatt's post come out to be extremely racist and unnecessary?</p>

<p>Yeah that was pretty bad, sdmatt.</p>

<p>As for accounting; you don't get a bachelor's in it, because you need 150 hours to sit for the CPA exam, which takes 5 years to accumulate. The accounting program is probably a bachelor's in business with a masters in accounting. Not all of the hours have to be business related, but a lot of them do, so you'll probably want to stick with a business major. As for an MBA, you'll already have a masters in business if you do accounting, so it will be very repetitive for you if you go for both.</p>

<p>Okay, I did a lot more research on the pathway to becoming an accountant. Let me share what I found, and I would really appreciate if somebody would please let me know if anything I say is incorrect:</p>

<p>You can major in anything; it doesn't matter. What matters is that you take the courses required to obtain a CPA for your state. I can major in History, Political Science, whatever, provided I take the units of accounting/business required by the state. Now, since UCSD has no business/accounting classes whatsoever, I'm assuming I will have to take those classes in graduate school. If I plan to do this, and earn my M.B.A. concurrently, this feasible? I won't be able to actually start working as an accountant a lot later than most, since I wouldn't have been able to take the classes. And again, do firms even want you if you majored in something else entirely? (As in, would a firm pick somebody else who <em>did</em> major in accounting/business over you?) I don't like the idea of being behind the game, either. Four years of undergrad and THEN two years of b-school and THEN...looking for real work. Does this leave me at a disadvantage?</p>

<p>In addition, I have further questions:</p>

<li><p>What is a good major to choose? What do firms like to see? Does this even matter?</p></li>
<li><p>Is it a bad idea to take all the accounting/business units in grad school? Better to take a few in undergrad too? Again, does this even matter?</p></li>
<li><p>How difficult is it to practice accounting if you decide to move to a different state? I know you have to get another certificate for that state, but is this a long and tedious process where you would have to stay unemployed for a while?</p></li>

<p>OP, yes you can major in anything to sit for the CPA exam. But since UCSD doesn't have the under business program, do they offer those upper accounting courses that're required by the CPA exam or entered into a master program of accounting? If you can access those classes, you can get your BS degree first, then goto a college that offer MS in accounting or taxation, you should have the same chance for big 4. But if UCSD doesn't offer those classes and you really want to do accounting, transfering might be an option. I've heard the story that a UCSD student transfered back to a CSU campus just for the under business program, so you're not alone.</p>

<p>Another note, you can be an accountant without a CPA license then you don't need 150 units, a BS accounting degree will work. But since you want to make 90K, you really need the CPA title for it.</p>

<p>So it's mandatory to take business/accounting-related classes during undergrad? Or is it just favorable?</p>

<p>If this is the case...alas, I will have to forgo the option of accounting and continue my search.</p>

<p>Also a master degree is not a must for CPA license. Just because it needs the 5th year for the total of 150 units, some will opt to get a master degree. You might be able to fullfill those extra units in community college.</p>

<p>Yes, in California the education requirement to sit for CPA exam is: BS degree, 24 units of accounting, 24 unit of business-related subjects.</p>

<p>Edit -
I missed read you last post. It doesn't say mandatory to take them during under, but the accountacy board has some requirement for what kind of course those should be fallen into. Does the graduate school offer under accounting classes? At least I don't think it's effiecient.</p>

<p>If you really want to be an accountant, UCSD doesn't sound like the right school for you. I would not head to SDSU however as you can clearly do better if you got into UCSD. So you could start at SD and transfer after a year to a school that offers accounting.</p>

<p>If you want to be a venture capitalist SDSU could be a good place if you major in BME. Being a VC is a whole different game. You are likely to make more than $900K as opposed to $90K if successful and it takes a huge commitment.</p>

<p>I can tell you that successful accountants make a LOT more than 90K. However, if I were to advise you, I would suggest that you go to a school that offers an undergrad in accounting....period. Yes, you can get a masters in accounting;however, there are problems with this approach...</p>

<p>First, a masters in accounting may not be enough in some states to sit for some CPA exams. Some states not only mandate 24-30 credits of accounting but also have specific business course requirements that a masters may not provide. Thus, you might have to take two years beyond your bachelors in order to qualify to sit for the CPA exam!</p>

<p>Second, accounting courses tend to have various levels of prerequisites. For example, intermediate accounting normally requires a year of basic accounting. Advanced accounting normally requires finishing up intermediate accounting. Majoring in accounting as an undergrad will easily overcome this problem.</p>

<p>Third, if you are sure about accounting, you are much better off majoring in it as an undergrad and get a masters in some specialized field such as forensics, tax, financial planning or even advanced accounting then to start taking your basic courses in accounting at the masters level. You will, therefore, become a lot more proficient majoring in accounting as an undergrad.</p>

<p>Bottom Line: I would leave your school and transfer.</p>

<p>Whoops, meant to say UCSD could be a good place if you want VC.</p>

<p>is it just me or have a lot people become interested in pursuing accounting as a career?</p>

<p>ok, quick question about being a CPA. </p>

<p>i live in new york city and i go to school in another state and take the CPA exam there, it would not be recognized in new york?</p>

<p>You do not have to be licensed in a state to work there, unless you want to do auditing. If you want to work in NY, just make sure you meet their requirements. You might as well take your test there too unless there's some reason you need it in the state you're going to school in. Where you take your testing doesn't matter, it will still apply in any state so long as you meet all of their other requirements for licensing.</p>

<p>^ Why is CPA so state-based?</p>

<p>^^^ Although the CPA exam is a uniform exam, the CPA license is state based. Thus, each state has their own requirements for qualifying to sit for the CPA exam. However, it isn't as draconian as it may sound. Most of the states adopt the standards set by the American Society of CPAs with a few modifications. It is these few modifications that drive folks crazy.</p>

<p>not that i care, or am going to change. how could you possibly classify my post as EXTREMELY RACIST?</p>

<p>well sp?</p>

<p>how was it pretty bad? skittles. </p>

<p>some of you people dont get it. you dont have to go to UCB, texas, etc to get a job with the big 4. i know people that had sub 3.0 gpas and work for the big 4. all of the big four recruit at my school, virginia tech heavily. it may be because there are a ton of public accounting jobs in the dc area, maybe bc the big 4 audits the federal govt. i know this because i worked along side kpmg and PWC auditors, auditing the largest branch of the fed govt (you figure out which one). my point is that a sdsu grad can have just as a successful career as whatever school you ****s go to.</p>

<p>Sdmatt you are on crack, that post was mad long ago.</p>