Students who enroll in graduate programs give themselves many advantages by earning a higher degree. Earning a four-year accounting degree is a great accomplishment. However, just another year or two of studying can make a world of difference in several areas. These are the top five advantages of earning a graduate degree in accounting.
1. Career Path Flexibility
One of the biggest advantages of holding a graduate accounting degree is being able to qualify for more jobs. Many prestigious firms require candidates to have a Master’s degree in Accounting. This is because a Master’s degree provides a more well-rounded education in accounting. Students learn more in-depth principles and have more time to practice complex concepts. It also makes the exam for the CPA certification easier to achieve. With a Master’s degree and CPA distinction, accounting professionals can go far.
2. Different Degree Options
The two main degree paths are Master of Accounting and Master of Science in Accounting. Most students who enroll in the MS program have already finished a four-year undergraduate accounting degree and plan to enter the public accounting sector. Some people also plan to eventually set up their own accounting service. People who choose the Master of Accounting programs usually have accounting experience and may have completed a non-accounting but complementary type of degree. Although some people aspire to work in public accounting, others in this degree program may seek corporate positions or be self-employed.
Resource: Top 10 Online Accounting Degree Programs
3. Potential To Earn More
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, accountants earn an average annual salary of more than $65,000. Some of the top-paying jobs in the profession reach into the triple digits. For those who hold graduate degrees, the higher-paying jobs are within reach. However, experience is a key factor in building salary. With the advantage of more career opportunities, accountants can expand their experience and build toward a high-paying position. This makes it easier to live comfortably and save money for retirement.
4. Building A Stronger Personal Brand
In today’s competitive world, it is important to stand apart from other individuals and businesses. Accountants have to be able to show why they are a superior choice over other accountants. The easiest way to do this is to build a personal brand. A person’s reputation, philosophy, attitude, work ethic and credentials play important roles in the brand. With a master’s degree, graduates are seen as more credible and authoritative. A personal brand can be a beneficial marketing tool when writing a book, starting a blog or submitting writing pieces to publications. It can also help an accounting graduate land a better job.
5. Starting A Career Before Graduation
The National Association of Colleges and Employers said that accounting led all other majors in the number of students who were offered jobs in their field of study prior to graduation. Many accounting firms offer students jobs prior to earning a four-year degree. If this is the case, some firms also offer tuition benefit programs for students who want to continue on to earn a master’s degree. Working for a company with room for advancement is a great asset to any accounting student or recent graduate.
With so many advantages tied to earning a Master’s degree in Accounting, every proactive student owes it to herself or himself to seek a more thorough education. The opportunity to have the choice of working and advancing high or being a successful self-sufficient professional is rare. The first step toward a better future is choosing the right accounting degree program.