Network and volunteer your way to a bright future

By Robert Zunich, CPA/ABV
2013-2014 Chair of the Executive Board

If you are majoring in accounting or are in the early stages of your career, you have a great opportunity. The demand for well-prepared accountants is high, so your chances for getting and keeping a job are great.

However, you can have much more than a job. You have the chance to embark on a rewarding career that makes a difference in the communities you care about. If you want your work to matter beyond the numbers, the financial statements and the spreadsheets, you can make it happen.

Here’s how: start now. Your 20s are your developmental sweet spot and the perfect time to advance your education, build your professional networks and engage with people who share your values.

Seek mentors within and outside your current organization. Start by asking for advice from an experienced, trusted professional in your industry. Select someone who is a good role model, listens well and is willing to be honest with you. It’s also helpful to find someone who is unlike you in a key way.

As your relationship develops, ask the person if he or she would be willing to meet regularly. You might be surprised to find how willing successful people are to share their knowledge and experience.

You can also learn from people you don’t even know yet. You can meet new people through what are called our weak ties, our friends of friends of friends. That’s where your membership in OSCPA can be so valuable. One good conversation could have an enormous effect on the rest of your life. With 21,000 members and affiliates, there are many good conversations to be had here. So make a phone call, send an email or get involved in our Facebook or LinkedIn pages.

Another great opportunity is to be part of one of these programs from OSCPA and The Ohio CPA Foundation.

FETCH!® Financial Education Teaches Children Healthy Habits®

It’s never too early to teach kids the connection between managing money and future success. On Nov. 13, OSCPA members will visit elementary classrooms throughout Ohio to help students understand that connection through FETCH! This game, which was created by The Ohio CPA Foundation, mobilizes CPAs to teach kids basic financial literacy concepts now so they can better manage their money later in life.

ACAP-Ohio Accounting Careers Awareness Program

Inspire minority high school students to major in accounting and consider careers in the CPA profession. Through ACAP-Ohio, the Foundation partners with the National Association of Black Accountants to provide a week-long residential college experience for minority high school students to help attract talented individuals and foster a more diverse and inclusive profession.

Financial Fitness Ohio

Train Ohioans how to whip their personal finances into shape. Through this public service campaign, CPAs provide tips and advice for taking charge of personal finances and meeting goals. We’ll provide the resources, you provide the expertise, and together we’ll work to improve the financial outlook for Ohioans.

Young CPA Initiative

Last fall, The Ohio Society of CPAs Young CPAs sent one or more YCPA volunteers to nine Ohio college campus career fairs. The group is now planning outreach activities for this fall.

In addition to OSCPA’s CPA Day of Service, the Young CPAs will:

  • Participate in American Heart Association Heart Walks.
  • Serve meals to families in need.
  • Collect donations for charity at group events.

The Ohio Society of CPAs is here to help you solve problems, give you a competitive edge and connect you with like-minded people – people who want to be more.

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One Response to Network and volunteer your way to a bright future

  1. This is a great list of suggestion and I could not agree more with your hypothesis. Our 20’s are the time in our lives where we set the tome for how the rest of our lives are going to be. Good health, philanthropic deeds, learning to work with others…all great habits that we hopefully will carry with us for a lifetime!

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