Accounting Careers: Autumn Kimborough, who was 17 and lived in Flossmoor, Illinois, didn’t care about accounts. Summer employment at KPMG delighted her. High schoolers were encouraged to choose accounting careers during a three-week session. KPMG’s community impact director, Jennifer Flynn, led the industry’s staffing gap efforts.
200 or more people signed up for a summer job that paid $20 to $22 per hour, gave money for clothes and transportation, and fed them. The program gave people money and gave them chances to improve their work skills and manners. Each intern was given a guide to help them learn as much as possible.
After she learned about accounting, Autumn’s ideas changed. She thought she would have a boring office job, but her experience showed her that she could do interesting things. She was excited about the chances in accounting to travel and meet new people.
Keeping accountants on the job can be hard. Because of things like long hours, schedules, and preconceptions, more people leave than join. People who just finished college often go into investment banking, advising, or data analysis. Having to take more credit hours to get a CPA license turns off possible clients.
Accounting firms and charities are coming up with creative ways to deal with the talent flow problem. In New York City, the Deloitte Foundation, Urban Assembly, and Outlier.org worked together to test a dual registration program. By taking a “Intro to Financial Accounting” course at the University of Pittsburgh, high school students and seniors can earn three credits. This program encouraged underrepresented students to go into accounting.
It is important to have a wide range of work experience. Even though there are jobs available, only 2% of CPAs are black and 5% are Hispanic. Elena Richards, KPMG’s top diversity, equity, and inclusion officer, said that the best way to fix this problem is to start early and reach out to more people. By showing many different options, they hope to get kids from different backgrounds interested in accounting.
Accounting is a great job that pays well and has good job chances. Through internships and new programs for young people, the accounting industry promotes a wide range of rewarding jobs.