For our eighth blog post, we are continuing in last week’s trend of describing our research process and documenting what we are learning as we go. My research topic is the minimum wage laws in Oklahoma; the potential of them rising and the consequences that would ensue if a Bill is pushed through that forces owner’s to pay their employees more per hour. I went to Branson this past weekend with some of my best friends from high school and had a blast, but, with being out of town plus being around all my friends that go to other colleges that I rarely get to see, I got absolutely no research done this past weekend. I came back from Branson Sunday night and was determined to make up for lost time and told myself I was going to do nothing but research this week. Unfortunately, my roommates recently introduced me to the TV show “How I Met Your Mother”, and the show is insanely addicting. So, most evenings, I do a combination of researching and watching “How I Met Your Mother” at the same time. Seems like a good compromise, but most of the time it turns into about 99% watching “How I Met You Mother”, .9% checking my phone and scrolling through social media, with the other .1% being devoted to research (which is usually just opening the internet browser). So, up to this point, I haven’t done any research outside of what has been required for class, but all that will change from here on out, and I mean it. This time when I say I’m going to get work done, I’m actually going to get the work done.
Right now I am in the middle of the process of writing Essay 2 for my Comp II English class. For Essay 3, we have been assigned to write a narrative essay about our research process we used to construct Essay 2. As the assignment list says, hopefully keeping track of my writing process over the next handful of weeks will provide me with a detailed list of resources to use to write Essay 3. Thus, this post is the first entry in my notebook I’m using to record notes to use for Essay 3. If we’re being totally honest, I have not put much effort into Essay 2 outside of the work we’ve been required to do for in-class assignments. Therefore it’s hard to really look into and analyze my process because, again, if we’re being totally sincere, my process up to this point hasn’t been hardly anything. Really the only sources I have are the ones that we have had to bring to class, but I suppose that’s better than having nothing at all. I haven’t precisely nailed down an exact research question per say, but I do know what I am going to write about, just not exactly sure how to word it. I am going to do my paper on the minimum wage laws in Oklahoma, and how raising the minimum wage would affect small business owners. I chose this topic because I want to own a small business when I graduate so raising minimum wage affects me directly. I haven’t done much research yet, but I plan on utilizing the Big Orange Search System and other services offered by the library to aid me in my research.
For this blog post, we are assigned to find and summarize an article we find online from a reliable source. Since I am an accounting major, I used The Wall Street Journal as my online source. The article is called, “Who Really Gets the Minimum Wage” and was written by David Neumark on July 6th of this year. In David Neumark’s article, “Who Really Gets the Minimum Wage”, the author argues that raising the minimum wage doesn’t lead to higher unemployment as most people expect, but instead David Neumark argues that the people who benefit from higher minimum wages aren’t who we expect it to be. Allow me to explain; Neumark argues that low-wage workers will benefit from an increase in the wage floor, but the people who will end up suffering are low-income families. Neumark supports this claim when he argues, “Minimum wages are ineffective at helping poor families because such a small share of the benefits flow to them”. Most people think that low-wage workers are the same as low-income families, but Neumark gives evidence to this being false. The main distinction between the two groups are that many low-wage workers live in higher-income families, “workers who are not the primary breadwinners and often contribute a small share of their family’s income”. The difference with low-income families is that “about half” of poor families have no workers, so obviously they don’t benefit at all from higher wages because they’re not making any wages. Neumark argues that raising the minimum wage won’t help the lower class like everyone thinks it will and people should look for different ways to help raise the earnings by the lower class, like the “Earned Income Tax Credit”, which directly targets low-income families by giving tax breaks to them and helping pull them up to middle class. It will not happen overnight, but over time tax breaks like the Earned Income Tax Credit will help promote success for Americans everywhere.
Oklahoma State University has a very highly-praised and well respected business school. The Spears School of Business is one of the most iconic buildings on campus (in my opinion at least) and they are starting to break progress on their brand new building which is awesome for them. It shows that the business school is growing and thriving. One of the reasons the Spears School of Business is so great, of course, is the amazing faculty they have on board. Even if you narrow it down to just the School of Accounting, there are twenty-one faculty and lecturers. While they all have their own great publications, I will focus on three men in particular, Bradley Blaylock, Dan Eshleman, and Don Herrmann. Bradley Blaylock has published in a few journals involving accounting including Review of Accounting Studies and Accounting Review. Dan Eshleman has posted a ton of articles, most being posted to Auditing: A Journal of Practice and Theory. I don’t know much about Dr. Eshleman but from what little I do know I can assume he’s pretty into the auditing aspect of accounting. The most influential one is Dr. Don Herrmann because he teaches the accounting course I’m enrolled in. He is a coauthor with two other professors of the textbook used in my accounting class. So not only does he publish articles and readings, but he helped write a text book which I think is pretty cool. It’s also the textbook we use in class which is even more cool because I’m studying what’s in the text, but all that stuff is the work of the guy I’m listening to teach it. It’s cool thinking that to become a professor you have to work so hard and do so much stuff, but even after that, our professors keep working to share their knowledge with the rest of the world.
Reddit.com is a very interesting website. It’s a collection of articles written by people that belong to the site and reviewed and voted on by other users. You can browse through the front page that is full of popular posts that people have voted up or you can search using a keyword that will take you to pages of articles of whatever topic you search for. Since I’m an accounting major, I searched “accounting” and was connected instantly to more articles than I could ever read. (http://www.reddit.com/r/Accounting/search?q=accounting&sort=relevance&restrict_sr=on&t=all). There are a lot of good articles to choose from, but two really grabbed me. The first one is titled “Do you genuinely enjoy accounting or did you become an accountant for the job security/above average pay?”. The link for this article is http://www.reddit.com/r/Accounting/comments/1gzgkj/do_you_genuinely_enjoy_accounting_or_did_you/. I found this article very amusing to read because that’s what a lot of people assume when I tell them I’m majoring in accounting. Everyone says it is very boring and they feel sorry for me but I’m going to make a good paycheck so they congratulate me at the same time. The second article that caught my eye is an article from a guy that is going back to school to earn a degree and is asking the accountants on reddit if they could go back and do school again, would they chose to major in accounting again or would they choose a different path? http://www.reddit.com/r/Accounting/comments/1t3xef/if_you_could_go_back_would_you_major_in/. It was interesting to read peoples’ replies; about half said they would do it all again and the other half said they’d switch and try something different. However, almost everyone that said they’d pick a different major said they would stay on a business path. Today I learned that reddit is a fun site that also has helpful information on it.
The article I was assigned to read and write this blog post over is called “Waste Not, Want Not” by Bill Mckibben. In this article, Bill quite honestly rips Americans for wasting so much stuff everyday and gives a wake up call to the general public that if we don’t change our consumption habits, there could be serious ecological ramifications. He rattles off some alarming statistics, like his little town of 550 people produces a “trailer load of waste every couple weeks” and “a hundred million trees are cut every year just to satisfy the junk-mail industry”. That one absolutely blows my mind…a hundred million trees cut down and used to literally produce “junk”. What an absolute waste. He talks about how previous generations got away with it because they had plenty of atmosphere to burn through, plenty of cash to throw away, plenty of good soil to tear through and throw away, but we can’t get away with that anymore. The article is virtually asking its readers what they’re going to do to make a difference, and with the sense of urgency in the author’s voice, he’s asking not only who, but when will someone stand up and make a difference. This article made me ask a lot of the same questions: who will step up and make a change and when will it happen? It also made me ask what all are we wasting? There’s thing we waste everyday without knowing it. Hopefully everyone does their part and takes a stand to make a difference, and it starts today.
The subject I’m interested in is accounting. By using the Edmon Low database, I was opened up to a wide range of various websites and journals related to accounting and all sorts of other business avenues. I found a great site called search.proquest.com that allows you to search through a large assortment of scholarly journals which are very reliable sources when writing a paper. Steve Locy is the librarian that is overseeing the accounting section of the library research projects. The home page is very simple with a lot of information and links and facts but very few graphics or colors or things like that. The page was definitely designed to direct and help students get work done and get facts down, not so much to be flashy or impress you. The page is fantastic though because it offers so many great links to great websites and helpful sources; for example search.proquest.com. This will be very helpful as the semester goes on and I can’t wait to utilize this tool to make me a better writer.