For military service members and veterans exploring career options, accounting may be a great move. The military is a great place to get started in the accounting field, and it provides training and opportunities for growth.
As in many business and finance fields, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) can boost career advancement. The University of West Florida (UWF) offers an online MBA with an emphasis in accounting that students can complete in just 16 months.
UWF provides assistance to veterans and active duty military, starting with the admissions and enrollment process and continuing through graduation. UWF ranked fifth in the nation in the 2018 Military Friendly Schools ranking.
Why an Accounting MBA?
The 2018 U.S. defense budget came in at over $700 billion. From computing payroll to advising commanders on financial matters, diverse accounting job options exist in the military. Today's Military lists the following positions:
- Budget Analysts
- Payroll and Timekeeping Clerks
- Financial Managers
- Treasurers and Controllers
- Procurement Clerks
- Purchasing Agents
Today's Military reports that military accountants earn an average annual salary of $94,180. Other accounting roles and salaries include:
- Budget Analyst: $117,768
- Treasurers and Controllers: $106,632
- Purchasing Agent: $111,210
- Financial Manager: $79,524
What Assistance May Be Available?
The cost of an MBA is a common concern. Military benefits can help reduce the expense, beginning with entrance exams.
Business school admission generally requires the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT). At over $200 each, the cost of taking tests can add up. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs can reimburse veterans utilizing VA Benefits for these test fees, check here for more information and eligibility. The Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES) reimburses eligible military personnel for the cost of admissions exams.
Of course, it is important to consider the cost of tuition, as well. Some online MBA programs come in at $30,000 or more. At about half that cost, UWF's accounting MBA is an affordable option. UWF also provides a tuition discount for active duty military and veterans.
What Is the Outlook Beyond Military Careers?
Those looking beyond a military career may find that accounting continues to be an excellent choice. Consider the following:
- The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that the demand for accountants will grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2026.
- Accounting comes in fourth in a ranking of "Top 25 Hot Jobs for Veterans."
- Accounting made the top 10 in a U.S. News & World Report Best Business Jobs ranking. In addition to a strong job market and better-than-average salaries, accounting gets high marks for work-life balance.
According to a 2018 Corporate Recruiters Survey, more than 75 percent of companies plan to hire MBAs in finance and accounting. Starting base salaries are listed at $105,000 per year. This is well above the $65,000 for new hires with a bachelor's degree.
Florida is home to numerous military installations. According to Enterprise Florida, the state also ranks No. 2 nationally in space and defense systems manufacturing. An online MBA in accounting from UWF can prepare military personnel for growth in a highly satisfying military career and beyond.
Learn more about UWF's online MBA program with an emphasis in Accounting.
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