Learning something new every day!

About Me...

In June 2007 I decided to look into returning to school for my Bachelor's degree. I had been managing okay with my Associate's degree, but the idea of moving back home [South Florida] without more education under my belt was not so appealing. By the end of July I had started my first class. Two years later I am five classes away from completing that degree and my oldest child is about to start her college journey. View my complete profile

About This Blog...

With this blog I hope to share some of what I have learned through my experiences as an online student and now, mom of a college student. Here you will find great scholarships, student deals, and other information to help with your voyage into higher education. Happy Studying!

Student Loans & Resources

As a college student, I know how daunting it can be taking some courses. In my final year I am taking some of the hardest courses in my educational career. If I decide to pursue my MBA, they will only increase in their difficulty. With so much attention focused on my course work I do not want to expend additional energy wondering and worrying where the money will come from to pay for this education.

Every college and university has a financial aide department. It is recommended you speak with a counselor in that department and have them assist you in determining the amount needed to fund your (or your child's) education. But, that alone is not the answer. And there are some great sites available to help you decide on the right loan package for you.

Simple Tuition puts many lenders in one convenient place. Find information on FAFSA, private and government loans, having a co-signer, and the best loan for you.

Click here to find the right student loan for you

Monster Learning is powered by The same people who help you find work will assist you in finding a school and money to pay for your education.

Essay Edge will help you get into that college. Because what good is the loan and books without the education? Right? And once you have the degree in hand they will help you with your resume to get that job! Essay Edge (& Resume Edge) is partnered with Yahoo and HotJobs so they are a name you can trust. Admissions Essay Help

And do not forget about FastWeb and Upromise for assistance with finding scholarships and saving money for college. I cannot recommend these sites enough.

Find Free Money For College!

That is it. Some great resources for new, returning, and current college students. Know of other great sites? Have you posted about it? Drop me a line or send me a link and together we can get the word out.

APA Formatting - The Title Page

Plagiarism is preventable.  Proper citation on a paper can mean the difference between a well-researched and well-written paper and a plagiarized paper.  Many colleges have plagiarism detection software used to scan student papers for proper formatting and credit.  It is okay to borrow words ONLY IF you give proper credit to the original source of those words.  

Additionally, no more than 20% of your paper should be cited words or reference of other's work.  This means you need to give your opinion based on the facts you uncovered and convey this in your own words.  

Did you know turning in the same paper for two different classes without permission of the instructor also is considered plagiarism?  That is right, you can plagiarize yourself and that is also a no-no.  My school gives an "F" on the paper for the first offense, and "F" in the course for the second, and you are expelled for the third.  

Imagine all the money you have tied up into your education.  Now imagine having to pay for an education you could not complete because you failed to give proper credit in your research paper.  This is absolutely preventable.

I am going to share a recent paper of mine with you.  I did receive a 99% on this paper.  My only correction is paragraph 3 on page 4.  It originally read "I mentioned".  This is another no-no.  Research papers are not to be written in the first person.  I guess I got a little carried away after writing so many blog posts!

In the interest of space, I will break this post up into three parts: the title page, the body, and the reference page.  Here is an example of a properly APA formatted title page:

This is the easiest part of the entire paper.  It is simple to format.  Set the alignment of the page (not just the lines) to center and your word processing program should automatically set your information to the center of your title page.  The easiest way to do this in MS Word is to go to print preview and select page setup.  Then look for the image of the entire page.  This defaults to top alignment.  Just change this to center and click okay.

Be sure to add a header with page numbers.  The header is a snippet of your paper's title.  Then add the full title of your paper.  I separated my title into several lines for aesthetic reasons.  Next comes your name, your class, your instructor, and the date.  That is it!  

Tomorrow I will go over the body of your paper.  This will include proper formatting and in-text citations.

For more information on APA formatting check out the OWL at Purdue.  (OWL stands for Online Writing Lab.)  This is one of the very best resources on the internet.

CPA Requirements in Virginia

If you have been following this blog, then you know I am pursuing my B.A. in Accounting.  My tentative graduation date is January 2010.  This means I am in my last stretch of classes and must start deciding what I will do with my degree upon graduation.  In a discussion with my professor last week I was informed of some changes in the requirements for CPA certification (in the state of Florida where my school is located).  I live in Virginia, though.  So I did some research, which consequently was a discussion question this week in my new class, Auditing.  

Let me back track just a moment.  My college is a little different in that instead of taking multiple classes over the course of several months they hold one class each month for a total of 12 classes per year.  This is extremely helpful when you have a full time life outside of school.  So, when one class ends, the next typically starts (the exception is spring, summer, and winter break).  

Now, I am unsure of the field of accounting I want to pursue and would really love to go back for my MBA.  The MBA would take another 14 months.  Or 18 months if I opt for two different MBA designations; I cannot decide between marketing and international business.  This leads me to the field of accounting which most interests me.  I am considering the CPA designation due to its recognition.  Personally, I would love to practice cost accounting taking me towards the CMA (Certified Managerial Accountant) certification.  Then there is the CIA designation (Certified Internal Auditor).  Oh, and then there is Forensic Accounting.  This would be a CFE (Certified Fraud Examiner).  Now that sounds interesting.  I am seriously considering Forensic Accounting.


Today I am going to share the requirements for becoming a CPA in the Commonwealth of Virginia.  

To sit for the exam ( -
Education requirements:
  • 150 semester hours required
  • minimum degree - Baccalaureate (conferred by an accredited college or university)
  • at least 30 semester hours of accounting (to include financial accounting, auditing, taxation, & management accounting)
  • at least 24 semester hours in business courses (other than those required under accounting semester hours)
  • US Citizenship is not required
  • Do not have to be a resident, employee, or have office in the sate
  • No minimum age

Experience requirements (
  • at least one year of acceptable experience in accounting or related field (full- or part-time employment that extends over a period of no less than a year and no more than three years and includes no fewer than 2,000 hours of performance of services described) - may include providing any type of service or advice involving the use of accounting, management, financial, tax or consulting advisory skills or services. Acceptable experience shall include employment in government, industry, academia or public accounting or related services. This may be performed under a non-CPA, but must be verified by a CPA prior to sitting for the exam.

Exam (
  • must pass the exam according to the minimum grade established by the board in all sections of the exam

There are four sections of the exam and candidates must pass each section in any order within a “rolling” 18-month period beginning on the date of the first section(s) passed is taken (

To practice in the Commonwealth of Virginia an individual must hold a valid CPA certificate or meet the substantial equivalency requirements (holds license in another state).

Original CPA certificate:
  • must submit an application on a form provided by the board documenting the requirements of 18 VAC 5-21-30 have been met. 
  • must agree to comply with statutes and regulations of any state in which he/she is authorized to practice

If application is received three or more years after successful completion of the CPA exam, additional evidence of having met the CPE requirements and completion of the most recent Ethics CPE course must be submitted as well.

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