I am an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. I teach accounting in the Business Department. In my role, students from over 25 degree programs end up taking at least one class from me. I spent my career prior to UW-Stout working in Accounting Departments training future CPAs and now I teach accounting with a little broader brush because the students that I have now are going to be leaders who are using accounting information rather than preparing it themselves.
I was born in Detroit, MI and grew up in Belleville, MI. I graduated from Belleville High School and started working for Dominos Pizza in Ypsilanti, MI. I worked my way up to Store Manager and while I was in management decided that I wanted to earn a degree in accounting and become a CPA. After leaving Dominos, I attended Pikeville College and received a BBA in Accounting. While at Pikeville, I met a mentor while working as an accounting tutor who suggested that he might have an affinity for teaching. After college, I decided to attend Morehead State University to pursue an MBA. While working on my MBA, I worked as a graduate assistant in the accounting department and that is where I taught my first classes and discovered that I loved teaching accounting.
After getting the required accounting experience to earn my CPA, I decided to pursue teaching as a full-time vocation. While I have experience as a CPA, a controller, a staff accountant, and a managerial accountant, for the last 20 years I have worked as a college professor. I am proud to have made this my life’s work and I am looking forward to being an even better teacher after this experience.
TEACHING AND LEARNING PHILOSOPHY
I believe that it is my responsibility as a teacher to provide students with the following: an environment conducive to learning, the knowledge that will help them reach their goals, material that will help them learn, and help in becoming motivated to be successful. My teaching philosophy involves showing students who have little or no background or knowledge of accounting and how it will be useful to them in their daily lives and future careers. One of my favorite methods is to give examples from my previous experience in the industry in both management and accounting. This makes the information livelier and more relevant to the student.
My first task as a professor is to realize that the students are a little intimidated by accounting. I sometimes try to make the point, especially with the upper-level courses, that while Cost Accounting can seem complicated, it isn’t any more difficult than an Electronics course or a Supply Chain Design course. It’s just a different way of thinking, and you have to dig into the topics that we are doing and make the material yours. For the BUACT 206 course, I explain how I didn’t begin as an accounting major. I want to make the students understand that you don’t have to be a math genius to understand accounting. Letting them know that I was a decent math student, but not the best. This helps the students understand their success in my courses will hinge more on how hard they are willing to work more than how strong they are at mathematics.