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The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

Counting on Success: A Look into Stan State’s Accounting Department

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Dr. David Zhu, a professor of Accounting, in his office. (Signal Photo/Jake Leahy)

From balancing books to balancing budgets, accounting majors at CSU Stanislaus can count on preparing for a promising future.
The accounting major is dedicated to learning about financial reporting, analysis, and management. It prepares students for various aspects of the business world and teaches them financial skills such as balancing budgets, business planning, and analyzing data that would be valuable to any employer.
Accounting as a major could be perfect for students who may be interested in starting a business, likes working with numbers, or even has an interest in working for the FBI.
Professor of Accounting, Dr. David Zhu shared his knowledge about the accounting major and profession.
“Accounting is a business language. When you understand accounting you understand the connection between the numbers. You can read between the lines and understand the business. You can understand how the company is going to do in the future. All the numbers in a company are connected. That is the ultimate goal of accounting.” Dr. Zhu said.
Accounting isn’t only crunching numbers. The major and career opens up a lot of doors to potential job opportunities, as the major prepares students for every aspect of a business, such as learning the ins and outs of Microsoft Excel and other business related software like SAP (Statutory Accounting Principles) or ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning).
There are many potential job opportunities that come with an accounting degree such as consulting, auditing, bookkeeping, and even being a detective for the FBI.
“We have invited FBI agents to our university to talk about a career in the FBI. They have agents in the field that are accountants. Detective is one of the biggest jobs in the FBI because they need to understand the crime itself and that always involves numbers.” Dr. Zhu said.
Dr. Zhu further elaborated on the careers the FBI offers, saying that the only additional qualification accountants need for the career is fraud examiner. Stan State offers a course titled ACC 5185 – Forensic Accounting and Fraud Investigations that prepares students for this qualification.
Aside from inviting the FBI to talk about careers in accounting, the university consistently invites many businesses to offer internships to its accounting students.
Businesses such as Foster Farms or Bank of the West have been known to offer well paid internships to Stan State’s accounting students in the past.
Many of these internships lead to jobs, as a vast majority of Stan State’s accounting students in the past have had jobs lined up for them before graduation.
Unlike other universities that offer an accounting degree, Stan State’s curriculum is specifically designed to help students prepare for the CPA (Certified Public Accountant) exam. This exam certifies anyone with an accounting degree as a public accountant and helps cement their career as an accountant for any business that may be in need of their services.
Committing to the accounting major at Stan State not only expands your resources for securing a job before graduation, but also prepares and progresses your journey to get certified as a CPA earlier than students at other universities.
“Our students graduate with 120 hours when the CPA requires 150 hours. Stan State’s curriculum has been tailored to prepare for the CPA exam. They do not need to take any additional hours, they only need to add more credit hours which is a requirement by the state,” Dr. Zhu said.
Taking additional hours to finish the requirement can be completed at Stan State by either continuing into a masters program or taking additional courses to add onto their bachelor’s degree.
Dr. Zhu acknowledged that there are some misconceptions and wanted to put them to rest.
“People think accounting needs a lot of math. It does not,” Dr. Zhu said, “You only need to know basic math and how to use a calculator and you’re ready to go. It is not a difficult job. When you get a degree you understand the concepts and it becomes routine. Accounting is a fun career and you can support your family with it.”
Accounting major Madison Hiti (Junior, Accounting) believes in the future of the career she has chosen. She explained that although there are many other factors involved in running a company, accounting will always be what will keep a company afloat.
“Accounting is always going to be the backbone of a business,” Hiti said.
The Department of Accounting & Finance is located in DBH 216 (Demergasso Bava Hall) and can provide more resources to students looking for more information about the major or the profession itself.

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Counting on Success: A Look into Stan State’s Accounting Department