Due to significant growth in the number of students selecting to pursue an accounting degree, one of the best ways to get ahead of the game and stand out among other job candidates is to participate in extracurricular activities for an accounting major. Since employers are looking for qualified candidates with a broad range of marketable abilities beyond the classroom, extracurricular activities can be the perfect way to fill a gap in actual work experience and boost your resume with key skills that will be valuable in a professional accounting setting. Whether you are looking to land an internship or your first entry-level job, the following are the top extracurricular activities that accounting employers most like to see.
Professional Accounting Clubs
When you go on an interview for your first accounting position, chances are very high that the employer or interviewer will inquire about your involvement in professional accounting organizations. Being involved in an accounting club outside of the classroom is a great way to express your love for accounting and demonstrate your commitment to staying up-to-date on the latest developments in the field. In addition to the on-campus Accounting Student Association or Accounting Club, students with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher should join a chapter of Beta Alpha Psi (BAP), which is the international honor society for financial information students. Becoming the president, secretary, treasurer, or chairman of any professional accounting clubs can also win major points with future employers.
Volunteer Community Service Projects
As one of the most important extracurricular activities for an accounting major, community service work is an excellent way for students to highlight selflessness and motivation. Since all employers are looking for ambitious self-starters, participating in volunteer service projects can be an effective method of showing you take an initiative while giving back to your community. In order to connect the community service to accounting, you could help prepare tax returns for local residents at no charge, advance financial literacy among community members, or manage the finances of a local charity pro bono. In addition to helping a good cause, community service will communicate to employers that you have the life skills needed for leadership.
Intercollegiate or Intramural Athletics
While the direct benefits to your job application may be less obvious than the previous two extracurricular activities, there are still many advantages that can be obtained by participating in intercollegiate or intramural athletic teams on your college campus. Not only are sports important for keeping you physically fit and healthy, but they are also a great opportunity for accounting majors to develop the teamwork skills that are needed to work effectively with other people in a professional work environment. Furthermore, excelling on an athletic team will require the self-discipline, commitment, reliability, and motivation that employers are searching hard to find. If you are able to become a captain of your sports team, you will also show interviewers that you have the leadership skills needed to organize and motivate others too.
Overall, becoming involved in extracurricular activities can supplement your academic coursework and work experiences to provide a sense of personality to an otherwise dry resume. With so much competition for jobs in the current business marketplace, it pays to make the most of your free time at college by developing additional marketable skills. With these extracurricular activities for an accounting major, you will be able to boost your resume, attract leading employers, and give tangible evidence that you have the qualities of a good accountant.