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Accountants may find a career in an unexpected organization -- the nation's top crime-fighting bureau, the FBI. In 2009, the Bureau recruited 7 percent of it's newly hired staff from accounting backgrounds. In 2013, accounting was still listed as a top critical skill for recruiting purposes. As the financial world changes, highly-skilled accountants are needed to solve increasingly complex financial crimes. The FBI offers several job options for people with an accounting background, and promises an exciting career.
FBI Special Agent
Your accounting skills can qualify you for an entry program to a career as an FBI special agent. Special agents have exciting and demanding jobs, working to solve crimes. Many crimes are financially motivated, requiring agents who understand accounting principles and financial transactions. Your job may involve investigating bank robberies, solving fraud cases, white collar crimes and criminal violations. To qualify, you must have been certified as a CPA or earned a bachelor's degree in accounting and have at least three years of accounting experience.
FBI Professional Jobs
All organizations need staff accountants or staff with accounting skills. The FBI is no exception. The FBI's finance division is responsible for managing the organization's finances. The finance division is made up of the budget and accounting sections, as well as a procurement section. These financial jobs develop and manage the Bureau's resources. Additionally, an accounting background can qualify you for a professional staff position of intelligence analyst.
The FBI created the position of forensic accountant in 2009 to handle the increase and complexity of corporate fraud cases. These are professional positions that do the financial investigation portion of solving crimes. In this job, you may investigate terrorists and spies. Forensic accountants analyze financial records, create financial profiles, make preparations for search warrants, sit in on interviews, trace funds and testify in court. Every FBI field office hires forensic accountants. Accounting education, certification and professional experience may qualify you for this job.
Financial Management Internship
Accounting students may be interested in a volunteer twelve-week internship in the FBI's financial management unit. Students have the opportunity to apply their accounting skills to business problems at the FBI. The work depends on your experience and area of expertise, but possible assignments can include auditing financial records, analyzing financial information and tracking data. Interns should be proficient with computers and Microsoft Office applications.
- Federal Bureau of Investigation: FBI Forensic Accountants
- Federal Bureau of Investigation: What We Investigate
- Federal Bureau of Investigation: Speeches
- Federal Bureau of Investigation: Accounting / Finance
- Tennessee Alumnus: FBI Has It All
- West Virginia University: Accounting Major Eyes Job with FBI
Sara Mahuron specializes in adult/higher education, parenting, budget travel and personal finance. She earned an M.S. in adult/organizational learning and leadership, as well as an Ed.S. in educational leadership, both from the University of Idaho. Mahuron also holds a B.S. in psychology and a B.A. in international studies-business and economics.