For Wintergate Group partner and professional accountant Simon Chhoeu the end of the financial year has brought with it a rush of work.
"Over the next two months the business will be busy processing tax returns," Chhoeu says.
"For individual tax returns we have a division of tax refund specialists."
The Cambodian-born Chhoeu, 30, says accounting sparked his interest at school.
"I was the treasurer for the school magazine, which I helped fundraise for, and I always had an interest in accounting," he says.
After school Chhoeu received a scholarship to study accounting at the University of Technology, Sydney, before completing a Masters of Taxation and becoming a member of Certified Practising Accountants (CPA) Australia.
Chhoeu has used his accounting skills to help charities as well as individual clients.
"We're helping orphanages in Cambodia raise funds in Australia and then giving the funds to the children or the orphanage for them to have an education scholarship," he says.
Chhoeu says accounting is a universal skill.
"No other degree gives you that flexibility. You can go anywhere globally and it's a good foundation for starting a business."
Qualifications: Just about every major university in NSW offers accounting courses, either as a bachelor of accounting or as a major in the commerce or economics degrees.
In order to become a professional accountant, students must become accredited by CPA Australia or the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia (ICAA).
To be eligible for accreditation students must complete a number of designated subjects. Students can then undertake further study through ICAA or CPA and gain industry experience to become accredited.
Course description: Accounting courses are usually for three years.
They focus on a range of accounting areas but students also study relevant law and economics subjects.
The CPA and ICAA programs are postgraduate courses that consist of either five (ICAA) or six (CPA) subjects.
Costs: Undergraduates can expect to pay approximately $7100 per year, government supported. Units offered by an industry body cost between $695 for CPA units and $1010 for ICAA units.
Assumed knowledge: Students are expected to have studied 2-unit maths (HSC level). Bridging courses are available for students who don't have a maths background.
From the inside: Chhoeu says students should look to join an industry body.
"The bachelor of accounting is just your basic undergraduate degree," he says.
"To put yourself above the crowd you need to join a professional body. It is five [or six] more subjects that take another two years."
More details: cpacareers.com.au, charteredaccountants.com.au