Ever since my freshman year, I have avoided taking accounting at all costs. It may not have been my main reason for transferring out of Rutgers Business School but I’d be lying if I did not admit that it was at least a contributing factor. I knew that by pursuing a different passion, I would never again need to worry about taking a single class on “balance sheets,” “income statements,” and all of the other wonderful accounting-lingo I did not understand.
Of course, when I decided to minor in Entrepreneurship at Rutgers, I once again brought myself back to square one. Accounting for Entrepreneurs was a requirement for the minor that I would now have to fulfill. No more running.
“Okay, Rocky. You can do this. You have to.” I told myself.
If you asked me at any point leading up to this semester why I wanted to avoid accounting so badly, I probably would have rattled off a number of excuses:
- Accounting is too systematic
- INFJs are very unlikely to choose careers in accounting
- I don’t enjoy working with numbers
- I’m not detail-oriented enough to succeed
To put it plainly: I didn’t think I’d be any good at it. I was convinced my skill set did not align with the qualities required of a successful accountant. However, after completing one semester of an introductory course in accounting, I have to admit, most of my pre-conceived notions about accounting were wrong.
I am by no means suggesting that I have what it takes to become an accountant. I still believe there are people out there in the world whose skills are better-suited for that type of work. However, I actually enjoyed learning about accounting. I thought I would hate the subject and I didn’t! I attribute much of my success to my professor who was extremely organized, clear, and thoughtful in the design of the course. It was very by-the-book and that helped facilitate my learning.
We covered A LOT of material in the few short months that made up the semester. Each week, I knew our two classes would follow a simple structure. First we’d have a lecture on a new chapter, then we’d have a class to review homework problems on the new material. I never missed a single lecture (except for one when I was outside of the country) and I really learned a lot from the in-class lectures, textbook readings, and weekly online homework. I definitely gained an understanding for how accounting works, at least enough that I could monitor what is “going on” inside of a small business, which is fantastic since that was a main learning objective of the course.
With the help of a good friend who is also in the Entrepreneurship program at Rutgers, we tackled the material each week making sure we never fell behind. Before exams, we would study together and review all of the material. Having his support outside of class also made the world of a difference. (Especially for the cumulative final exam that had over 20 chapters worth of material. There was A LOT to review.)
I never thought I’d take an accounting course in my lifetime so if nothing else, this is another bucket-list item that I can now check off. The skills I have gained are awesome and I am excited to have a better grasp on my finances in the future.