Susan went from a stay-at-home mom to a CPA by studying with the Wiley Platinum CPA Review Course and so can you!

Susan Parkins left a career in law enforcement to raise her two boys. Once they were grown and ready to leave the nest, she didn’t really know what to do next. She had a degree in Journalism, but it hadn’t led to a career in that field, and she had been out of the workplace for 15 years.

Susan felt like she was at sea and confused about which direction to go.Then, after talking to a few people about accounting, and how it served as a gateway to opportunity, she decided to take a chance. She longed for a job that allowed her flexibility, independence, and substance.

Susan Discovers a Passion for Helping People Through Accounting

“Around the same time,” she says, “I had read about some scandals in our state of New Mexico—about elderly people being taken advantage of financially.

In fact, I found that it’s not uncommon for companies to steal from private trusts of the disabled and seniors. When I heard about what was going on, it made a huge impression on me. That’s when I decided that accounting made sense to me.”

So, Susan made the unexpectedly seamless transition from law enforcement to mother to a fiduciary specialist for guardianships. She went back to school and put her hours in. “I really, I want to use accounting to help people,” she says, “so I’m going off in a different direction than most traditional accountants. It’s called elder care accounting, which will also include daily money management. It’s about serving and protecting vulnerable individuals.”

Business Was Booming Despite the Pandemic

Susan’s new career began with a bang. She started working in public accounting and passed the CPA exam a year later. Since then, her fiduciary business has soared.

“I remember very clearly when all of this began. The pandemic was just starting. I had just passed the test, and the days felt long, and we were trying to fill them up with different activities. But pretty soon, the calendar started filling up fast—once the word got out. Fast forward to today, and I have a scribbled-up planner with lots of business and I’m trying to be in three places at once!”

Susan is so busy that she occasionally has to remind herself that this is what she actually wanted.

“I knew from the beginning, through studying for the test and my year in public accounting, that I wanted to use accounting in the guardianship community. I knew there was opportunity—I didn’t realize just how much there would be.”

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Finding Meaning in Serving Others

Susan’s work almost always involves distress in some way. It’s part of the human condition she’s familiar with from back in her law enforcement days. “I’m very comfortable with alleviating distress,” she says. “I was helping an older man yesterday whose bills are all over his house. He was upset. He had lost track of his living expenses. Whether it’s something like that or deciding if someone has enough money for assisted living, there are a lot of different types of issues that come up.”

It’s interesting how things come together. Susan went from wondering what her next career move would be, to doing the exact right thing for all the right reasons. “I do feel that way, and I know it all started as soon as I received my CPA. That was the key to everything. It was the key to establishing myself as a professional and—I can’t think of a more business way to say it—it just lifted me to the ranks of the attorneys I deal with every day. In order to get that trust, you have to be a CPA.”

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Susan chose to study with the Wiley Platinum CPA Review Course for her best chance at passing the CPA exam. When you’re ready to start studying, be sure to check out Wiley’s CPA Review Course options to find the course that best fits your study style and budget.

Wiley Helped Susan Feel Prepared Despite Challenges

Susan’s noble cause didn’t come without challenges. She first had to get accustomed to going to school again to take her semester hours, then she had to assume the task of preparing for and passing all four parts of the CPA exam. “I suffered a lot to get that CPA,” she says.

“I’m not in the 300 club, you know, but I’m pretty close!” she laughs. “They were the hardest tests I’ve ever taken. But the fact is, I felt prepared for them because of the practice tests that I took. That’s how I really used Wiley. Whether I studied the books, watched the videos, or did the practice tests, I felt very well prepared. I didn’t feel stressed at all.”

While accounting proved to be a radical change of career for Susan, she’s taken to it with ease and professionalism. “I honestly feel that it’s an excellent second career for me, or for anyone—especially women looking to redefine themselves after staying home to raise children. There’s so much opportunity, and it’s so rewarding that I couldn’t ask for a better outcome.”