Chartered Professional Accountants (CPA) take the nitty gritty data found in spreadsheets and apply it in creative ways. Far from mind numbing dullness, it’s a path with unlimited potential. For 23-year-old Andrea Yeung, a career in accounting is much more than crunching numbers, it’s a gateway to an invigorating career.
For Yeung, digging into that juicy data gets her blood pumping. All those facts and figures point to a bigger picture in the world of corporate finance and she relishes the opportunity to provide robust value. She’s a Financial Analyst at TELUS, where she thrives in the multifaceted role at one of Western Canada’s most vibrant workplaces. Yeung says she’s grateful for the mentorship and resources she’s been getting at TELUS.
A born and bred Vancouverite, Yeung is an energetic and engaging professional with a passion for the digital realms and exotic locales. She’s writing her CPA Common Final Exam this September. We spoke with her about her choice to pursue her CPA designation.
How would you describe your personality?
I am not as reserved and introverted as the accounting stereotype would indicate. I’m much more outgoing than that. I love music and can be found singing once in a while. I’m an avid social and digital media fiend and love keeping up with all news in technology and fashion.
What about all those boring spreadsheets? Doesn’t it get tedious?
It’s really what you make of it. You can choose to branch out and really look at how that data impacts the business and along the way, change your job title and provide valuable insights.
What have you found most challenging so far about the CPA program?
It’s easy to take a one dimensional approach by simply replicating work from previous years or regurgitating information, but the CPA challenges you to look at the bigger picture and consider what else could be a value add in the situation.
What advice would you offer to someone considering pursuing a career as a CPA?
At the end of the day it’s a strong career choice because it can apply to so many different sectors. Do your research. It’s quite a commitment with an undergraduate degree plus three years of work experience required.
How does pursuing a CPA designation apply to diverse roles in the business community?
CPA gives you such a broad range of skills. No matter what your ultimate career path, you’re so well equipped.
Ultimately, Yeung says committing to a career path as a CPA amps up her chances of success. She started her university studies at UBC’s Sauder School of Business with an eye towards marketing (she interned at Vancity), but quickly found accounting had the robust business application she was looking for.
It’s easy to dismiss accounting as a dull gig with no spark or creative output, but Yeung says all careers have some small element of the mundane. It’s really about finding the interesting nuggets and leaning in.