Career Day – Getting Kids Excited About Accounting

Dan Swanson

CPA | Manager

Recently, I was approached with a simple question, “How do you feel about giving a presentation to high school students for Career Day?” My initial reaction, in true accountant fashion, was, “What is the date? I hope this doesn’t interfere with the October 15th deadline.” Then, the more I thought about it, the more excited I became at the opportunity to stand in front of students and speak about the exciting world of accounting. Yes, you read that correctly: the EXCITING world of accounting.

How do I reach these kids? How do I make my presentation fun and interactive? What do I wish I knew when I was that age? Why accounting? What if I am not asked to come back next year? I had all these questions that needed answers. The future of the entire accounting profession was relying on my presentation. Okay, maybe I am overexaggerating slightly, however, my goal was to give a fun presentation to get young minds interested in learning more about the accounting profession. 

I began my presentation with a brief introduction and immediately asked the students what they thought of when they heard the word ‘accountant.’ We all laughed at the fun and exciting stereotypes surrounding the accounting profession. These were too great not to share:

Besides laughing with the students and getting them to open up, there was an important takeaway from this exercise. We, as an accounting profession, need to do a better job sharing our experiences and the opportunities that await  students considering going down the accounting path.    

After conveying these experiences and opportunities to the students, I realized my time was running short, so I challenged them with the following:

Next time you meet with your guidance counselor, make sure you sign up for the accounting course offered at your school. But I am warning you, speaking from personal experience, you may fall in love.

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