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I graduated with an accounting degree in the early 2010s. Due to not networking enough I worked lots of deadend jobs. My grades were decent (i.e. 3.5 GPA, etc). I’m in my late 20s right now. Currently in Lambda School’s Data Science and Machine Learning program. I should be done in March 2021. I’ve sought the help of accounting recruiters and for the most part don’t want to work with them. Biggest success I got with one of them was driving 20+ miles to two prospective employers and both of them turned me down. With my current program it’s difficult to get into a ML position because the field is heavily skewed for master’s and PhD applicants. I might as well open the door to accounting and after a couple years of experience make my break into AI/ML positions. I’m not afraid to say it: if I could live my life all over again I wouldn’t have gone to college. But I’m still young enough to turn everything around.
I want to maximize my chances of success so I want to combine accounting with machine learning. I’m pretty sure I’m at 146 credit hours so I need 4 more credit hours.
1) How do I make sure I’m at 146 hours? Last time I checked there’s a process I have to go through where I have to submit my transcripts to make sure I hit 150 hours. I can’t waste time and money waiting for my application.
2) Any cheap ways to get my last hours? I’ve looked into BYU’s Pathway program, coursera programs, as well as AWS certifications. I think the only way for me to get those hours is by enrolling into my local community college. Money is kind of an issue but getting that CPA would increase my odds of getting hired into either accounting or the tech world. Worst case scenario I borrow money as I’m currently unemployed.
3) Should I shoot for tax positions at smaller firms? I’ve been asking around and the older 40+ people are telling me to either call up smaller firms or study for the CPA.
4) I currently live in Chicago and am thinking about relocating to another state like North Dakota. Should I study for the Illinois board or for the state board I want to relocate? I don’t want to get into specifics but I want to leave Chicago.
5) What would you do in my situation? Should I email my alma mater’s professors? I’m lost, if it really comes down to bunkering down and studying for the CPA I guess I’ll do it. I can’t go back to working dead end jobs again.
I really appreciate the help. Thank you so much.
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