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In the competitive Seattle job market, having a four-year degree makes job applicants particularly appealing for local companies. According to Debbie Oberbillig, founder of Seattle-based employment agency Allen Partners, business is booming for people with four-year business degrees. She says that for those with a bachelor of arts or bachelor of science, unemployment rates are at 3.5 percent, a mark last seen in 2008. Four-year finance and accounting degrees are in high demand and are very competitive in the Seattle area.
Education was pivotal in the employment market for Daisy Meyer, who received a bachelor of science in accountancy from De La Salle University in the Philippines in 2000. After working for 10 years in external financial auditing, Meyer decided to take on an external audit role. Meyer now works as a financial reporting manager for Eddie Bauer, a Seattle-based clothing and outdoor wear company founded in 1920. She has been with the company for two years and credits her education as an integral part of her employment success, and her continued peace of mind.
“Having an accounting degree, I knew that I would be able to get a job, because all businesses need an accountant,” Meyer stated. “My education significantly equipped me in my chosen career path. I knew where I wanted to be, so I took the necessary education and training to get here. While real-world experience is very important in every business field, to be successful in accounting, you really need the educational foundation with regards to accounting principles, standards and ethics.”
In addition to her bachelor of science in accounting, Meyer also maintains her continuing education every year for her CPA.
Meyer offered advice for those who are deciding which educational path is right for them.
“It’s best if you can choose a degree in something that you’re passionate about, something you’d enjoy doing each day after you graduate,” she said. “You will spend a lot of your lifetime working, so it’s important to pick something that you like.”
She added, “Remember that your education isn’t only about your future employment and earnings; it’s also an opportunity to learn more about something you enjoy, find out what you do and don’t like, and begin your journey to discover what makes you feel fulfilled.”
Meyer also offered advice for students who are torn between passion and financial security.
“If the degree area you’re passionate about isn’t one that will pay the bills, consider a double major: one degree in the thing you love and a business degree to give you more options.”
Tracy Campion is a freelance writer covering all things Seattle. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.