What I Do When I’m Not Studying Accounting: Campus Involvement
Hear me correctly as I begin – I really enjoy accounting. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be at Wake, pouring the equivalent of a “busy season” workweek (and then some) into the classwork. That being said, I can only handle so much budget projecting, derivative accounting, and error finding at any given time. In order to get a breath of fresh air, I’ve found a few other things to get involved in, even as a graduate student.
Graduate Accounting Club: MSA students, by association, are automatically considered a part of the “club”. Membership is simply a perpetual invitation to all the events that this organization offers, but being on the executive council for the group allows you to play a part in planning such events. Together, we have had the opportunity to organize several MSA social nights downtown, host a bowling event, take part in on-campus charity events, design T-Shirts for our cohort, and even facilitate the first ever GAC Community Service Weekend (coming in March!).
MSA Ambassador: This channel of involvement gets you interacting with potential and recently admitted students. I’ve personally loved being afforded the opportunity to not only help provide a great experience for students making a rather weighted decision, but also to have a chance to discuss all of the reasons why I value my Wake Forest experience. Building tours, class visits, and lunch conversations are just some of the ways we make ourselves available to the visiting students. Being an ambassador is both refreshing and rewarding.
Graduate Accounting Agape Group (GAAP): My personal favorite on-campus group to be a part of is GAAP. That sounds eerily accounting-related, but I promise that it isn’t!* GAAP is an MSA Bible Study group that meets weekly in the business school to help refocus on things greater than academics. Even more so, this group provides a chance to fellowship and connect with other graduate students in a wholly different way than we could in the classroom. We share a meal together and explore topics that are important in all areas of our lives while at the same time giving and receiving advice, support, and encouragement.
Studying something you enjoy is rewarding, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need a break from it on the occasion. These organizations have helped to complete my graduate student experience and, in my opinion, add just as much value to my professional development as the knowledge I have gained in the classroom.
*GAAP is also an accounting acronym that stands for Generally Accepted Accounting Principles — a standard framework of guidelines for financial accounting.
Amber Ridings is a student in the Master of Science in Accounting program and expects to graduate in 2015. She is from Inwood, West Virginia and earned her BA in Accountancy at Bethany College. Beginning in October, she will work as an auditor for Dixon Hughes Goodman in Morgantown, WV. In her spare time, Amber dabbles in skydiving, hiking in local areas, and traveling at home and abroad. On the slightly less exciting days, she enjoys writing letters and drinking a good cup of coffee. All of the above, she says, are better done with friends.