There are two sides to Wyoming’s Lisa Gray.
First, there is the art-loving, romantic that loves to weave words together in poetic symmetry, is passionate about theatre and beams with creativity.
Then there’s her sharp analytical mind, a person that can chew on mathematical equations and systematic problem-solving all day.
A 2011 graduate of Lambton College’s three-year Business Administration – Accounting co-op program, she loves spreadsheets as much as a fine theatre production.
In fact, this award-winning accounting graduate has dabbled in theatre, writing scripts and directing. She’s also attended Niagara College for broadcasting and developed a strong interest in psychology at a young age.
She says her artistic alter-ego complements her daily accounting work.
“I like to use my creative side to problem solve … using out-of-the-box thinking.”
And whatever the 22-year-old is doing, it’s working.
After graduating from Lambton College in 2011, Gray received the CGA (Certified General Accountants) Ontario’s Award for Excellence, presented to the top graduating student in the program.
The award provides $2,500 towards her CGA designation and $500 cash. It also looks great on a resumé, Lisa admits.
“It’s great to feel recognized for how hard I’ve worked in school,” she says.
She credits the Lambton program for providing her with a strong foundation to enter the work force.
“I didn’t know anything about accounting until I came to Lambton.”
After her first day of classes she says she was hooked.
“The program is well-designed to give a holistic approach to business and develops a solid background for a seamless entry into the CGA program.”
Her co-op experience led to a job in the college’s accounting department, which paved the way for full-time work as an accounting technician with her current employer, TODA Advanced Materials in Sarnia.
“By the end of my program the best experience was my co-op at the college. I was able to work around the most interesting and intelligent people and was a sponge to everything. I had two managers that I highly respect and admire, Kelly Murray-Scott and Kate Large.”
They inspired her to pursue the arduous CGA designation, as well as a Masters' Degree.
Kelly Murray-Scott says Lisa made a great impression on the department.
“She is extremely bright and catches on quickly and is so dependable,” says Murray-Scott, Manager, Financial Services for the college, and who is also a former Lambton graduate.
“Lisa was always focused on what she needed to achieve and winning that (CGA) award was one of her goals.
Graduates can immediately launch into a career, or take an additional year at Lambton to obtain a graduate certificate in Human Resources Management.
For Lisa, the choice was simple. She loves sinking her teeth into her accounting work.
“A lot of people I talk to ask why I enjoy it. I never considered (accounting initially) as a career. It just came so naturally.”