I can remember it like it was yesterday… Walking across the stage at graduation thinking all the late nights of studying was worth it. I had officially graduated Sam Houston State with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting. I graduated in December so I packed up and left for my parent’s house just like I would every year to spend the holidays. The feeling hadn’t set in that I was never going back to my one bedroom apartment in Huntsville.
My family and I had discussed that I would stay with them and take a few months off since I hadn’t had much down time the past 4 years because I always went to summer school and had a job. Sounded like a great idea! Well Christmas and New Years came and went and by the time it was the end of January I knew I wanted to get some kind of job where I could use my degree.
You see I didn’t hold a business or finance job in college. I bartended as it worked will with school and I made pretty good money. I didn’t want to do an internship because I felt like that would be putting me back 1/2 a semester to a year from graduation. I knew I didn’t want to become an auditor (I hated the class in college), I figured maybe something at a bank or a financial institute to get my feet wet. So I would search and apply at places that I thought would be a good fit until this one day. I came across a job ad for a part-time seasonal job doing income taxes for a small business in Waller. I wasn’t a huge fan of Income taxes, but It was something I knew and felt a part-time position would be great to get my feet wet.
I received a phone call and was asked if I would be willing to do a phone interview. I didn’t hesitate, but I wasn’t prepared at all (as I was sitting outside of the high school to pick up my brother). Interview went well as I just had a good feeling. A few days later I was asked to come in for an interview. The day of the interview it was storming! Streets were flooding I just knew it was a sign. They called and rescheduled my interview for the next day. This was my first “adult” interview… Talk about nervous. Interview went better than I had expected. Later that day I was offered the job! I started part time the next week.
My first day I jumped right into my first tax return. In college we learned the “old school way”. Everything was hand written. I not only had no experience with tax software (Besides turbo tax) I wasn’t sure where to start. My boss let me do as much as I could before asking for help… this was great for me because I am a hands on leaner, but at the same time I was so nervous I was going to completely mess it up. As each day came and gone the more comfortable I became. To my surprise I went from part-time to full time in less than a month.
I survived my first tax season and I actually enjoyed it! I was so eager to learn more. I trained for weeks on QuickBooks and how our clients liked their bookkeeping done. I completely feel in love with that. Working with numbers and money is why I chose a degree in accounting. As year-end approached I decided I wanted to know more about taxes. After a lot of research and talks with my boss and my family I decided to study and sit for the IRS Special Enrollment Exam.
The reason I wanted to share my story is because I think it’s important to know everyone has their own path. For those of you who are college graduates or even college seniors it’s not the end of the world if you don’t have a plan. Take your time, research your options, and enjoy the journey!