Accounting and Law Degree

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Accounting and Law Degree

Postby klaurenpr » Mon Jul 25, 2016 8:18 pm

Hi all,

Hope everyone is enjoying their summer!

When I considered my career options I though (and still think) that earning an accounting degree and then a JD would prepare me for a very good career path, both professionally and financially. I chose accounting for my undergrad since I believed this career had a lot of job opportunities and would prepare me very well from a business perspective, which has always been one of my main interests. However, lately a thought or concern has crossed my mind: Once I am ready to work in the legal field, will my accounting degree be undervalued? Needless to say, the accounting field has been a tough one since the beginning, especially when it was time to study for my CPA. Accounting can be a profession by itself that does not necessarily need additional degrees aside from an MBA since many professionals live very well by being CPA's. I am concerned that once I am ready to work in the field of law my accounting degree is valued less than if I would have simply stayed in the accounting field. Would like to hear everyone's thoughts


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Re: Accounting and Law Degree

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jul 25, 2016 8:34 pm

Depends entirely on what you've done with your accounting degree. Did you work at a Big 4 accounting firm? Did you get your CPA? I was at PwC and got my CPA, and I have found that firms have generally been very impressed by the work experience.

As far as the significance of the degree itself, I don't think firms could find any way to care any less about it. It's about what you've done with the degree, not the degree itself. It may show you have some quantitative skills and a basic business understanding, but even so, it will only be an extremely marginal benefit unless you worked in the accounting field for at least around 2 years.


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Re: Accounting and Law Degree

Postby dabigchina » Mon Jul 25, 2016 8:48 pm

Having intuitive grasp of accounting is basically gold in corporate law. You're not going to get that level of understanding with even 2 years of work experience.

Workin in professional services before law school is excellent fodder for interviews.

An accounting degree without work experience is useless.

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Re: Accounting and Law Degree

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jul 25, 2016 9:57 pm

Am a CPA who worked at a non big 4 firm for 2 years prior to law school. Went to a T14.

During OCI, the CPA designation and my ability to talk about real substantive work helped alot. I was often asked about it and did very well at OCI.

In retrospect, definitely worth it. Especially seeing the edge it gave me against all of my liberal arts degree peers.

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Re: Accounting and Law Degree

Postby XxSpyKEx » Tue Jul 26, 2016 7:41 pm

The last two posts hit the nail on the head. OP if you want to do corporate, an accounting degree is hella useful. It's even better if you got a couple solid years of work experience as an accountant. Think a lack of understanding of accounting and finance is an issue with most law grads who go into corporate who come from a liberal arts background. If, on the other hand, you want go into litigation, the accounting background isn't going to be valued as much (although, if you're asked about it at OCI, I think it's easier to spin in your favor relative to your peers who have degrees in basketweaving).

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