Even if you’ve decided to study business, chances are you’re still trying to pinpoint your emphasis and future career. Accounting and finance degrees provide students with well-rounded business training, preparing them for strong careers in a myriad of high-demand fields. Here are five reasons to consider pursuing an accounting and finance degree:
1. You’ll forge a strong base of skills and experience.
Accounting and Finance programs produce professionals with strong technical skills and well-rounded business experience. Students become proficient in various data and forecasting tools from Excel modeling and valuation models to data analysis and sensitivity analysis, but they also gain the strategic thinking and problem-solving skills to help any business and organization make sound decisions. A traditional undergrad degree takes four years to complete, while adult undergraduate programs can be completed in closer to two years.
2. Jobs are in high-demand and high-paying.
Accounting and finance is a high-demand field with a median pay of over $70,000 a year in 2020, while financial analysts had a median pay of more than $80,000 a year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Estimates also forecast growth moving forward. And hiring is strong—many students with these degrees have jobs before they graduate.
3. You’ll be ready for certification.
Many undergraduate accounting and finance programs are designed for students who want to be qualified to take the certified public accountant (CPA) exam and become licensed as CPAs. The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) estimates that people with a graduate degree or certifications like a CPA license make 5-15% more.
4. You’ll have many strong career options.
Students who earn a B.A. in Accounting and Finance or a B.S. in Accounting or B.S. in Finance are well prepared for a myriad of business-related fields. Graduates, especially CPAs, often get jobs with accounting firms, including the “big four” international accounting firms—Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG, and PricewaterhouseCoopers. But it’s more than just accounting. Others pursue finance-related positions as a financial analyst, a banker, a personal financial advisor or planner, or an investment advisor/researcher. Some who begin their careers in public accounting often move into other areas of business, government, or nonprofit organizations.
5. It’s often about more than finances.
Strong accounting and finance programs don’t just provide technical tools and knowledge, they also develop students’ analysis and critical thinking skills. This allows them to approach complex problems with a measured process that allows them to find solutions. By pairing an accounting and finance degree with a liberal arts education, you’ll grow into a well-rounded professional who is more valuable to employers and organizations.
If you’re ready to explore the next steps for your journey, Bethel offers an undergraduate B.S. in Accounting and Finance and a B.A. in Business degree with emphases in finance and accounting. Bethel also features adult undergraduate B.S. in Finance and B.S. in Accounting.