Why Accounting is the BEST Major Ever

While many of us experience frustration that comes along with pursuing your MPA, we often disregard the prospects that the major provide to its graduates. Below are some of the benefits I believe only accounting majors have the privilege of enjoying:

  • High Demand in the Workforce – whether you are planning on working in public accounting (Big 4 or otherwise) or industry accounting, there are limitless opportunities in the workforce for accounting graduates.
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  • Wealth of Opportunities– have you ever wished you worked for Google or Apple? Accountants can easily attain job positions in the most selective companies after attaining just a few years of public accounting experience.
  • Flexibility in Concentrations – when people think of accounting, they always seem to think about debits and credits. However, the accounting major consists of many different concentrations/ tracks (as our program provides) to cater to all different preferences.
  • Reasonable and Stable Salary – while working in the accounting industry can have quite the crazy hours, the salaries that accountants receive for their services is pretty fair and stable. In addition, accountants often receive year-end and CPA bonuses that are not readily available for other jobs and majors.

“The grass is always greener on the other side”, is a statement that none of us can deny, especially during the toils and hardships of exams and projects. However, let’s remember that just being part of the best accounting program in the nation is nothing short of a blessing. Cheers!

Happy Holidays in the ATX

It is definitely the most wonderful time of the year, especially for students. Finals are over, another semester under the belt, and the stress is gone! For all those who are hanging around Austin after finals time, here are some great holiday ideas to get rid of that finals hangover!

Trail of Lights
If you have never been to this, it is definitely a MUST. Austin brought this holiday light show back in 2012 after a few years of being unable to fund the cost. It is at Zilker Park until December 22nd. In addition to the incredible lights and displays there are also food trucks, music, and hot chocolate along the walk!

Free Carriage Rides at the Domain
If you find yourself shopping at the Domain on Friday or Saturday evenings from 5:30-9:30 be sure to stop by Dillards or Macy’s where there will be a line of people waiting to catch a ride in a horse drawn carriage! The Domain also has a 40 ft Christmas tree that would be great for taking pictures! (aka selfies)

Mozart’s Coffee Shop
This well known coffee shop has not only great coffee but also great dessert, live music, and a light show! It is a great place for a date, friend date, or date with yourself and a good book. You can also pick up a quick Christmas gift there if you have any friends or family that have a love for excellent coffee!

The Driskill
This old hotel is a great place for an evening out on the town! If you go by during December 16 – 17, 2015 there will be a live string quartet, decorations, and treats from 5 to 7 p.m. Don’t pass up an opportunity for some free fun at this fancy place! For more details you can visit the website.

Be sure to celebrate the holidays Austin-style at some of these local places before you leave. You never know where you will end up when you graduate so make the most of your time while you are still here in Austin!

 

Huzzah!

IMG_3150I attended this year’s UT’s Madrigal Dinner, “Something Borrowed, Something Brewed,” put on by Creative Arts + Theatre. For those of you who are curious (because I did not know beforehand), a madrigal dinner is a form of dinner theater that is set in the Renaissance (or Medieval) period that is traditionally held around the holidays. The UT Madrigal Dinner is a 35-year tradition and it was excellent to witness. You can read about past dinners and performers at the Daily Texan’s website, here and here.

The night began in the foyer of UT’s Student Union where the choir sang opening songs and the first act took place. We were then led into the Shirley Bird Perry Ballroom, which had been transformed into a large dining hall with a stage at the front.

Throughout the evening an act of the play would take place, followed by a short concert by the choir, and then another course of the meal was brought out. While the guests ate, the actors and choir members would go around to each table and perform improve while staying in character. They would also sing (somewhat raunchy) songs that were quite popular at our table. At the end of each act and song we were instructed to yell “Huzzah!”

11222468_10208041528542157_7753642995405678507_n A slightly blurry photo of the actors performing at our table.

 The student performers had an excellent energy and you could tell they were excited to take part in the performance. The crowd fed off the performer’s energy, and it was really fun to be actively involved in the telling of the story. The dinner lasted about three and a half hours, but the time flew by and it was fun to speak with the performers and meet other members of our table. I would definitely recommend looking into the madrigal dinner next year as well as other Creative Arts + Theatre performances.

As the semester has continued, I have made an effort to again engage in the university’s offerings outside of the McCombs Business School, however it is not easy as time has passed so quickly in the program. I cannot believe it is the end of November! I blinked and the semester was ending. I would encourage you  to make plans and prioritize what you would like to take part in before kicking off the semester because it is an absolute whirlwind when you get started.

12274775_10208041528662160_7172220243400676655_n                  A picture of my mom and me in front of the stage.

 

 

 

Black Friday Hacks

When it comes to Black Friday, the question on everyone’s minds seem to be “where and when should I shop?”. The crowd can be insane but the excitement of shopping for something seemingly “low priced” may compensate for all the craziness.


 

Below are a few hacks you can do to make your Black Friday experience smoother.

  • Save up WAYYY before Black Friday. When it comes to Black Friday, you must save up more than what you intend to spend. Maybe you thought you were going to buy an iPad, and that’s it. But when you enter the store, and see a heavily-discounted TV or other products, it would help to have the extra cash ready.
  • Research on pre-Black Friday sales. Some online sites offer Black Friday-ish sales a week or two before Black Friday. At this point, sizes are still plenty and the demand for the products has not risen exponentially. What a great time to be ahead!
  • Shop 2-3 days before Black Friday. The sales would have started in most stores, but the crowd has not arrived.
  • Go to stores with less crowds. Austin is a great place to be since it’s a smaller city. To those of you thinking of going to Houston or Dallas, you might want to rethink that decision. More crowded areas tend to be crazier this time of the year.
  • Have fun and be rational. If you use a credit card, remember your limit.

Black Friday is meant to be a fun-filled experience, but remember that it is also the weekend of Thanksgiving, so don’t forget to give thanks and be courteous.

A Day In The Life

Hi everyone,

As I was considering programs, I remember wondering what my life might look like as a MPA student at UT. Well it’s hectic to say the least. Here’s a peek in on my day, Monday, October 12th.

5:45am – Wake up. I caught a break this morning and got to sleep an extra 15 minutes. My mom is a teacher and I ride into town every day with her, but thanks to the holiday (Columbus Day) traffic was light.

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And this was a good day!

6:45am – Leave home. This is always hectic, mostly because our chocolate lab doesn’t understand the concept of personal space.

7:30am – Get to campus. I like being here early-it gives me a chance to read whatever novel I’m currently on (I’ve been reading 1-2 books a week lately).

8:00am – Financial Management for MPAs with Professor Rao. There are a lot of other MPAs in this section and he does his best to engage us at this early hour.

9:30am – Work. I have a pretty great job! I’m the Marketing Student Assistant in the Accounting Department. This day in particular I worked on blog posts, editing write ups of my conversations with PhD students, taking pictures for student profiles, and figuring out how to best highlight our faculty’s excellent research.

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One hot afternoon in September I ran around campus with a tiny foam finger to take pictures for Instagram.

12:30pm – Lunchtime. I try to wait until after work to eat, but that doesn’t always happen. If I’m not eating at this time I can be found doing work in the MPA lounge or running at Gregory.

1:00pm – Homework. I spent time working on a case that’s due tomorrow in Assurance (Professor Bradshaw) and on Intermediate homework that’s do Friday (Professor Chen). Trying to get out ahead, or at least stay on track, can be very difficult especially while recruiting.

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I’m still awed by the beauty of this campus. Hook ’em!

3:30pm – Managerial Accounting with Professor Laux. Our section is on the smaller side, but pretty amazing. I love that all of our learning in this class is tied directly to case studies.

4:45pm – Leaving Campus. I lucked out today and was able to get a ride home with my mom. I usually have to take a bus, which can take 45-60 minutes depending on traffic.

5:00pm – Run errands. It seems like being an adult is a constant, endless to do list.

6:15pm – Wind down. By the time we got home it was time to eat, feed the animals, and walk the dog.

7:15pm – More Homework. I revised my case study to be more concise in my statements. Writing for business school is very different from writing for media.

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Who could reasonably be expected to work in such conditions.

9:00pm – Relax. This is my one hour a day (ok sometimes 2-3) where I watch some of my shows that have been piling up on the DVR.

11:00pm – Sleep. Collapse into bed.

Then wake up the next day and do it all again :)

MPA Student Life Blog

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