Medieval History is fascinating: manorialism, feudalism, Vikings, the Crusades. These are just a few of the highlights from this 10-century-long period that Aleisha Gottlund enjoyed teaching at universities in Iowa and Minnesota.
And just like other notable time periods of yore, her teaching career came to a close—mostly because she was moving from Minnesota to California, which restricted her academic options.
Looking for a more stable career to move into, Aleisha turned to accounting.
Accounting is a good career choice for stability and employability going forward.
Well, if we’re going to stay in the Medieval History theme, algebra was invented during this time, which led to more advanced mathematics.
For Aleisha, accounting offers different aspects that appeal to her personality: “Things make sense, which is nice,” Aleisha says. “From a practical standpoint, accounting is a good career choice for stability and employability going forward. It was a rational decision, but also something that appealed to me personally.”
The Hunt for a Quality Education
Setting up residence in Belmont—which later proved to be quite convenient for her to take exams—Aleisha began exploring the various Accounting programs available to her. She eventually chose our Certificate Program in Accounting because it:
- Fit her time commitment.
- Allowed her to pursue her education at her own pace (“which, in theory was faster than the other programs I looked at,” Aleisha adds).
- Offered a good starting point for someone who had no accounting knowledge.
While taking the leap to change careers can be daunting, Aleisha soon discovered that accounting was her calling card.
“When I was going through the classes, I discovered that I really enjoyed what I was learning and that there was great potential for me to enjoy it as a career,” Aleisha recalls. “Now that I’m actually employed, I realized that I was correct. Day to day, I’m really getting into it. But I had a hint of that when I was studying. It was fun to learn new things, new ways of thinking in a totally new field, and it was presented in a way that I really enjoyed.”
Successful Career Change
Completing the certificate in just two years, Aleisha is happily working as a staff accountant at Credo Semiconductor, a company that is growing very rapidly.
“I was brought on to support the CFO and the controller as the third member of the accounting and finance team,” Aleisha says. “So I was thrown into the deep end, doing everything that they throw at me. And I’m also doing HR. [Laughs] It’s definitely a startup in that people have multiple roles. I have a very short background in HR from one of my interim jobs in between careers.
“It’s a great company—good people to work for, I’m learning a ton about accounting and I really love it.”
The whole program provided a really good base for me to be more immersed in this world.
What About an Average Day?
“There is no average day,” Aleisha answers. “In general, I do all of the processing of receivables and payables. I’m responsible for the month-end close. We moved over to a new Enterprise Resource Planning system right after I started. So I have been responsible for making sure that I understand it and that everyone on different teams is using it correctly.
“In that migration, I needed to make sure that everything lines up with all of our different systems that are linked to that software. I do a lot of admin-type stuff in that capacity. But in general, I’m focused on accounting.”
Employing Coursework on the Job
“We’re working on figuring out the accounting side of our cost-of-goods sold, so the Cost Accounting class was actually quite helpful,” Aleisha says. “The basic introductory courses provided a good platform for me to have an understanding of what we’re doing. The whole program provided a really good base for me to be more immersed in this world.”
“If the company does what we hope and grows appropriately and goes public, then my husband—who also works here—and I have some options. In an ideal world, I’d love to stay with the company and continue to grow in the accounting department. If the company is too big and it turns out I don’t like working for a large company, I might shift and work for a small startup, because at that point I’ll have had a lot of experience of getting a startup prepared for IPO. And who knows? If it all goes extremely well, I might be living on a boat in the Caribbean! [Laughs]”