BHP Faculty Spotlight: Gretchen Charrier – Accounting

Written by Madison Mohns

If you hear music playing from a classroom at 9:30 in the morning, odds are it’s Professor Charrier getting her students hyped up for the day’s lecture in Accounting 311H. Her quirky presence keeps students entertained and engaged with their learning. She has had the pleasure of working with important professionals in the field of Accounting in diverse areas of expertise. Over the course of her career here at UT Austin, she has taught upwards of 10 different classes, but ultimately she keeps coming back to teaching the fundamentals class.

“It’s fun to see it click for people. I love how the questions are so varied. It is interesting to be able to see what is running through my students’ heads.” Her classes are discussion-based rather than structured lectures, to allow students to take advantage of the intimate community that BHP provides. “I never give the same lecture,” she says, “I think it’s best to learn from others, so discussions allow students to learn from their peers; teaching someone else is the most valuable way of learning.”

What intrigues Professor Charrier about BHP students is not their ability to perform well in school, as she says she can find that anywhere. “You all have a sense of humor. I see an appreciation for personality,” she says. Professor Charrier capitalizes on the individual differences of her students and promotes curiosity. When teaching a lecture she never “know[s] what the questions are going to be. It keeps me on my feet.” This more tailored approach to learning, paired with the intimate environment of BHP allows her to focus more on concepts rather than just bookkeeping.

She also notices and appreciates the close bonds formed in BHP. “Your class is such a tight knit group,” she says. “I can see the friendships there, and that is really important. It’s the people that you meet here that are going to be your life-long friends.”

Outside of the class she loves meeting with her students and getting to know them on a personal level. Her office hours are in GSB 5.126D on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:00pm – 4pm, on “Fun Fridays” at various times, or by appointment.

Not sure what to talk about? Here are some great questions to help you get a great conversation going.

  • Tell me about your white elephant gift exchange experience.
  • How did you get into accounting?
  • Tell me about your kids.
  • How was your experience in Barcelona this past summer with the MPA program?

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