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How do I approach MAcc applications without experience?

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How do I approach MAcc applications without experience? [#permalink] New post 29 Apr 2014, 07:57
I graduated from college six years ago with a BA in English and Spanish. Right after that I entered a volunteer teaching program, got my M.Ed. from a "big name" school, and have been a teacher for six years now, both in the US and at a fancy prep school in South America. At the time I graduated I had a 3.9+ GPA, good school involvement, and a GRE score that supposedly translates to about a 660 GMAT (the 80th percentile or so -- I think I could do better with more practice).

I'm really interested in applying to MAcc programs for the 2015-2016 cycle but I'm not sure how to go about it since I have zero accounting experience. Programs like UNC specifically request students like that, while others have a huge list of prerequesites. I don't mind taking some classes before enrolling, but the prerequisites seem to differ for each school besides a couple of intro-level classes.

My question is this: Should I apply to MAcc programs based on my GPA and test scores and work experience alone and try to work out a program of studies with the school (I see lots have "bootcamp" style options or offer the prerequisites in the summer sessions)? Or would it be better to take a semester at my local university doing intro level accounting classes and then apply during that time, just to show I can hack it?

I think that I am a strong candidate aside from my lack of experience. Some have told me just to apply and I'll get in somewhere decent without having taken the prerequisites, others say that sounds impossible. What do you guys think??
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Re: How do I approach MAcc applications without experience? [#permalink] New post 29 Apr 2014, 12:39
I think I saw your post on reddit.


Definitely take a couple classes at a community college, especially just to see how you like it. In addition, you can knock out some prerequisites that are required for some of these MAcc schools' bootcamps.

UNC is a great option, their program is made for people who are switching into accounting. I know USC and UCI's MAcc/MPA program prequisites consist of 4 classes - accounting 1, stats, business, econ - just to qualify for their Summer Intensive (AKA bootcamp) accounting crash course, which covers intermediate accounting, audit, tax. About 2/5's of the students at these programs do the summer intensive. This will be a great fit for you, because these programs (USC, UNC) are tailored towards people who are career switching.

Your GPA and overall application seems great. To increase your odds, I think you would need to take the GMAT to have a better chance at most of these MAcc school. But regardless, you have a fantastic shot at these schools
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Re: How do I approach MAcc applications without experience? [#permalink] New post 02 Jun 2014, 16:29
Take a look at some of the program pre-reqs requirements before taking CC classes, as some will not recognize anything that isn't from a 4 year college.

If you aren't location bound and you aren't looking for absolute prestige, there are some good programs out there that are flexible. Katz at the University of Pittsburgh has a summer start date with a 3 term + summer program for non-accounting undergrads; University of Texas--Dallas has a similar program. Boston College has a summer intensive section followed by the 1 year program; Wake Forest does a similar style. Then Ohio State has a short list of pre-reqs plus a summer intensive that could be interesting. Identifying a target area and looking at reputable schools in the area is a good place to start.

If you know you like the field, you don't need to spend the time and money on pre-reqs unless you are targeting specific schools that require them. Reach out to their admissions office and ask if they make exceptions to the policy (the worst they can say is no).

I second the GMAT comment. Bone up on the quant to show the admissions staff that you can succeed coming from a poet background.
Re: How do I approach MAcc applications without experience?   [#permalink] 02 Jun 2014, 16:29
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