Man, Rebecca’s been getting some terrible college advice. I want to thank her in advance for allowing me to smash some of it here in a public forum.
My question has two parts. I will be graduating with my A.A.S in Accounting this December with a 3.6GPA after taking classes for four years.
It has taken me over the standard two years because of two reasons: I did not receive aid for the first half of my classes so I had to take them one or two at a time, and also because I switched from Business Administration to Accounting after taking my first Accounting course. I have been told that this would look bad on my resume because it would look like I worked slowly and wasn’t dedicated to my classes.
Whoever told you this has absolutely no idea what they’re talking about, so a) don’t worry about it, and b) stop speaking that person about anything related to your education and career.
It’s community college. One of its core purposes is to educate working people who are, you know, working a lot and cannot go to school full-time. By the logic of your advisor/friend/whoever, the entire endeavor of part-time education would be deemed laziness.
One of the reasons I attended community college was because I have worked full time the entire time I attended (even when I was taking classes full time).
I believe that it shows I was dedicated to getting my degree and that I am able to handle multiple tasks efficiently, maintaining good performance at work and in school.
Yeah, I totally agree. And so will the people who look at your resume.
Did I hurt myself by taking so long to complete my degree?
No. Please, brush that criticism aside completely. It has no merit at all. None.
The second part of my question is that I only need one class to get my A.A.S in Business Administration because of the courses I completed before changing my degree and the rest of the courses overlapping. This one class is an intro class which will cost me under $500 including book and not take up more than 8 hours of my time a week including homework.
It is not easy to come up with that amount of money, but I know that the degree would more than pay off that cost.
I think it would, too. It’s only $500, so it’s a low bar to clear in that respect. Honestly, even if it wouldn’t pay off in your career, I think the second degree would be worth it for vanity’s sake. You know, the cachet of people discussing you as someone with a degree in accounting AND business? Totally worth $500 to me.
I feel like it would be worth it to me to have this second degree since it compliments the first, I would even complete the degree if it was only an extra semester of work. I have been told that employers may see this as excessive or indecisive.
Good Lord, Rebecca, who is advising you? I really, really hope it’s not someone employed by any institution of learning. But I have to guess that it’s the same person that gave you that other terrible advice.
This advice is even worse. If this advice were a photo of an old boyfriend, Rebecca, I’d ask you to squirt it with lighter fluid, spark the flame and watch it burn to ashes until the fire puts itself out, just so you can absorb the finality of such bad advice leaving the Earth, and, by extension, your life.
Is obtaining multiple degrees in related fields excessive?
No, and especially not when they’re associate’s degrees. It’s not like you spent 12 years of your life getting Ph.Ds in each.
And especially when you didn’t actually pursue two completely different paths of study to get them — they just happened to overlap. Again, by your advisor’s logic, any dual-degree program would be excessive, when in fact, they usually mean you’re a highly motivated student.
All of this advice seems unrealistic, but I want to make sure I am not just sugar coating my choices and options.
Nope, no sugar.
What is your opinion? (I also have a certificate in Marketing Management. I do plan on transferring to get my bachelors eventually, then moving on to my Masters and CPA certifications. In the longer run I see having a Masters of Accountancy with the AAS in Business Administration and certificate of Marketing Management).
I think that’s a fine plan. I think a bachelor’s in business is an excellent all-purpose degree, and a bachelor’s and/or master’s in accounting and a CPA certification will be tickets to lifelong employment. As long as we have a government who loves taxing the rest of us and as long as we have the rest of us looking for every possible way to avoid paying that government any more taxes than absolutely necessary, there will always be work for accountants.
Now, just to add a small dose of expectations-management here, I wouldn’t rely on the certificate in marketing management to mean a lot to future employers. Marketing and advertising is my chosen profession, actually, and so I can tell you that marketing is one of those professions where success doesn’t actually require ANY formal education on the subject whatsoever.
Not that degrees in marketing are bad; they’re not. They’re just not required, by any stretch of the imagination, for success in the field. And so, if you have a certificate, then that’s probably gotten you at least an education in the basics of marketing, and that’s a good thing for you.
However, those things are also fairly easy to learn on the fly and on the job — so having that certificate won’t be something that distinguishes you significantly from your peers.
But that’s the only thing bad I have to say about the entire situation you present (and it’s not even “bad” anyway). Overall, it sounds like you’re doing fine — even with two related degrees and a full-time job. 🙂 Good luck! Please come back often and let us know how it goes!
— Anyone have similar tales of bad college advice? If so, let’s blast them apart together. Let us know in the comments below!