#059 Career Close-Up: Accounting Doesn’t Have to be Boring
Forensic accounting brings some excitement to the career path of accounting. My guest, professor Jim Vogt, shares it is multidisciplinary and is about much more than just accounting. In this episode, we discuss the types of students who might enjoy learning forensic accounting skills as well as the different career paths in this field. Students who show natural curiosity, perseverance, tenacity, and an analytical mind could benefit from making forensic accounting the aim of their college experience.
In this episode of the “College and Career Clarity” podcast, Lisa Marker-Robbins talks with Jim Vogt, who teaches accounting and fraud at San Diego State University and the University of Colorado Denver. Vogt has had an exciting accounting career working with businesses in fraud protection and prevention. He talks about the multidisciplinary nature of forensic accounting and the importance of skills such as natural curiosity, perseverance, analytical thinking, and excellent communication skills.
Vogt emphasizes that forensic accounting is not just about numbers; it also involves skills in interviewing techniques and identifying if someone is being deceptive. He addresses the misconception that accounting is a boring field and shows how forensic accounting can be a great fit for those with accounting degrees, as well as those with other degrees.
While accounting is the most common and probably the best path to take for a career in forensic accounting, Vogt explains that there are other degrees and certifications that can be helpful, such as finance or business degrees, and certifications such as Certified Fraud Examiner. He also suggests that an internship or work experience can be helpful in getting a foot in the door, especially for organizations such as the FBI, which hires forensic accountants and agents with accounting degrees.
Vogt discusses the full spectrum of the career path in forensic accounting, which includes prevention, detection, investigation, and legal resolution. He notes that organizations often overlook the prevention and detection side of forensic accounting, which leads to more cases requiring investigation and legal resolution. He also mentions the broad field of forensic accounting, which includes business valuation, commercial damages, and other areas outside of fraud investigation and examination.
In terms of where forensic accountants might find work, Vogt suggests that banks and financial institutions are great places to start, as almost all of them have someone working in consumer fraud, credit card fraud, or check fraud. Other potential employers include law enforcement agencies, accounting firms, and consulting firms.
Overall, the episode provides valuable insights into the diverse and exciting field of forensic accounting and highlights the skills and attributes that are essential for a successful career in this area.
- Unique, “non-traditional” career options for accountants
- Education needed by forensic accountants/ fraud professionals
- Skills needed by forensic accountants/fraud professionals
- Certifications available in forensic accounting/fraud careers
Meet Our Guest
Jim Vogt, CFE, MS is presently a Glazer Outstanding Lecturer Fellow with San Diego State University, teaching Fraud Examination, Forensic Accounting, Reporting for Accountants, and Intermediate Managerial and Tax Accounting. He also teaches courses in Fraud Examination, Forensic Accounting, and Fraud Auditing for the University of Colorado Denver.
Jim is CEO and founder of the Fraud Protection Institute and provides anti-fraud training and consulting for organizations (Board of Directors, management teams, and employees) focused on fraud awareness, prevention, detection and deterrence, and fraud risk assessment. He is also a John C. Maxwell Certified Leadership Coach and Trainer.
Jim has undergraduate degrees from Regis University in Business Administration and Psychology. In 2007, he completed his MS in Economic Crime Management from Utica College of Syracuse University. In 2008, he earned his credentials as a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE).
Prior to teaching, Jim had a long career in financial services. He is passionate about teaching and loves making a difference in the lives of his students. Jim is originally from Denver, Colorado and now resides in San Diego, CA.
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Links mentioned in this episode
[02:01] Overview of Forensic Accounting
[03:06] Characteristics of a Forensic Accountant
[06:00] The Path to Becoming a Forensic Accountant
[08:20] Entry-Level Job Choices
[11:16] FBI and Other Crime Agencies
[12:42] The Sides of Fraud Prevention & Response
[15:03] Fraud is On the Rise
[17:12] Finding Your Purpose
[17:55] Childhood Clues
[18:51] Wrapping Up