Numbers, Memorization, and Teamwork? An Accounting Major Requires More Skills Than Most Think

Written by: Zachary Auton

Passionate and driven full-time accounting student. Future CPA that will come to your tax and money needs. A huge sports fan- especially for Illinois basketball and the Chicago Bulls!

When choosing accounting as my major I first thought I was going to only be required to know simple calculations. After these interviews, I found out that was not true. It requires much more skill development such as teamwork, adaptability, and communication skills.

I had the opportunity to interview Derek Austin, a freshman accounting major here at Millikin University. I learned what a typical day was like for him. He wakes up every morning around 8am every morning. He heads to the gym around 8:30am and works out on various parts of his body depending on the day. I asked him what motivates him to go to the gym. He told me, “I go to the gym because I want to be in great shape for the soccer season.” He works out until around 10am and then heads home. He takes a quick shower and gets ready for class when he gets home. He leaves around 10:30am because he has his first class at 11am. He has classes until 2pm.

He then goes home after classes to work on homework or study for upcoming quizzes and tests. He does this until around 4 or 5pm depending on the day. Afterwards, he likes to practice his soccer skills. He practices for about an hour every day to improve his craft. He plays on the soccer team here at Millikin and wants to be at his best for the upcoming season next year. After he is finished practicing, he eats dinner around 6 or 7pm. Finally, he likes to relax and spend time with his family for the rest of the day. Whether that is just talking with family or playing video games. I asked him why he chose accounting as his major. He told me,

“I feel like it is the best fit for me. I work well with numbers, memorizing things, and with people- so I feel like this would work best for me. Plus, I like the opportunity of advancement and they are paid well.”

Derek Austin

Dr. Shailesh Patel is currently my accounting professor and primary advisor at Millikin University. I asked him why accounting is a great major. He said, “It is a great field. It is an exciting career. There are plenty of opportunities for advancements. It is a very rewarding career. Every day is different being an accountant.” I also asked him what advice he had for other accounting majors. He said, “Make sure you are good with people skills. At many of my jobs I had to work in teams. I had to work in teams up to 16 people.”

After he told me this, I realized that accounting majors need to have more skills than just the ability to do simple calculations. They will need to have the ability to work well with others, adaptability, and good communication skills.

Dr. Shailesh Patel

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