News Release

For Immediate Release

Contact: Brianna Williamson, Recruiter/Alumni & Development Specialist
Phone: 608.822.2483
Mail: 1800 Bronson Blvd., Fennimore, WI 53809
Date of Release: November 10, 2022

Lyne finds accounting career through Southwest Tech

Fennimore -

Mirhya Lyne, 2021 SWTC Accounting program graduate

Mirhya Lyne, a Southwest Wisconsin Technical College spring 2021 graduate with an Associate Degree of Accounting, shares her story and experience as a Southwest Tech student in the Accounting program.

Lyne chose to attend Southwest Tech because it was close to home and her brother and father were both graduates of the college. Although she was encouraged by her father to pursue a degree in accounting, she enrolled at Southwest Tech for the Agribusiness Management program and graduated in the spring of 2016. A few years after graduation, Lyne found herself helping her father with accounting work for his business and she thought to herself, “this would be so much easier if I knew what I was doing.” She recalls making a rather quick decision to pursue a degree in accounting.

When she found herself in a moment of self-doubt, she turned to her Southwest Tech advisor, Matt Schneider, for encouragement. “He told me that I absolutely could do it and that’s just what I needed to hear,” said Lyne.

She began accounting class in the fall of 2019 and when asked what she liked about her experience at Southwest Tech Lyne says, “it was better the second time around because I was really into what I was learning and I chose to be an involved student. I wasn’t very involved the first time I attended Southwest Tech and I think that affected my grades and desire to be on campus. I would highly suggest being involved as a college student.” Lyne enjoyed helping other students in her classes as well as participating in the SWAT (Southwest Accounting Team) club.

Lyne also said, “the accounting instructors, Gary and Melinda, are phenomenal and made the accounting program so much fun. The learning environment was very hands-on and I feel like I have a step up against other accountants for that reason. For example, during our payroll class, we completed every step of the payroll process for an entire tax year. I know a lot of accountants who didn’t have the same experience at other colleges.”

Melinda Nicely, Southwest Tech accounting program instructor, encourages people to pursue a career in accounting because of the large number of jobs available in a wide variety of industries. Nicely also states, “the ability to choose between Southwest Tech’s two accounting programs really allows you to choose the path that is best for you and pursue the accounting career that you’d love.”

At Southwest Tech, students can choose between the Accounting Assistant program, which is a one-year technical diploma, and the Accounting program, which is a two-year associate degree. Both programs are offered in-person or online and graduates of the two-year associate degree program have the ability to transfer their credits to a four-year college or university. “The flexibility to take classes in-person or online was really nice. My advisor, Matt, helped me determine which style of instruction would work best for me per class,” said Lyne.

Lyne is currently working as a staff accountant at Honkamp, P.C., and says she was encouraged by her instructors to apply for the position. “Melinda and Gary are so supportive and encouraged me to apply for jobs that wanted someone with a four-year degree. They show so much belief in you that you end up believing in yourself,” said Lyne.

Individuals considering a career in accounting may enjoy math, working on a computer, and learning. Lyne says, “if you’re someone who has considered going back to school, I understand it’s a scary thought and I was very hesitant to get another degree when I already had one I wasn’t using, but I am so thankful and so happy that I took the leap to return to school for something I enjoy and something that has so many job opportunities available. I feel like SWTC’s Accounting program was a good mix of traditional and non-traditional students. I wasn’t the only one who wasn’t right out of high school attending and that made me feel more comfortable and welcome, too.”


| Southwest Wisconsin Technical College is one of 16 institutions that comprise the Wisconsin Technical College System. Southwest Tech offers more than 60 programs in a wide variety of disciplines. Courses are offered on campus, online and in a blended format. The college provides apprenticeship, certificate, technical diploma, and associate degree programs that respond to district workforce needs and prepare students for family-sustaining jobs and career advancement. |

Posted in Alumni