So, you’re headed off to college? Good work, smarty pants. Now it’s time to figure out what to do there -–including what college courses you should take and what major to choose (although, you already know that you’re picking accounting right?). The great thing is that there’s someone who knows all of this – your academic advisor. And, if you let them, they’ll make your life a lot easier and save you from wasting time.

Sounds pretty important, right? Here’s why you should get in good with your academic advisor:

They know what you need

Academic advisors know what classes you need to graduate with the degree you want. In some situations, they can even hook you up with classes that could be applied to multiple majors if you’re undecided or that could lead to an early graduation. They’ll also steer you away from classes that won’t get you any closer to that shiny diploma.

You can save a lot of time (and $$$) by talking to your academic advisor.

They know when you need it

Academic advisors are experts on prerequisites and timing and are there to help you plan your ideal class schedule. They can make sure you know that you have to take Accounting 200 and Math 110 before you take Accounting 210 (yes, you might need multiple courses to get ready for just one). They’ll also tell you what semester courses are offered, so you don’t get stuck needing an ethics class to graduate in May when it’s not offered again until September. And if your art class isn’t going so well, they might be able to help you withdraw without the class affecting your GPA.

They know how to get it

Academic advisors know all the rules and resources that you need for your college career. They will help you know when and how to register for those classes you have to take. When the time comes, they’re the ones you see to declare your major (accounting, remember?) and apply for that fancy diploma. They also know people all over campus, so they have access to campus resources that you might need down the road, like tutors or financial aid.

They know the work-arounds

Academic advisors understand the ins-and-outs of undergrad. For example, they know your future bachelor’s degree only requires 120 educational credit hours—but that getting your CPA demands 150. That means they are also a great resource for helping you figure out a way to make up that 30-hour difference. Consult with you advisor about potentially double majoring or minoring to tackle those extra 30 hours while you’re still getting your bachelor’s. And in the meantime, learn more about the 150-hour requirement for CPA licensure for yourself. 

Bottom line: go see your academic advisor as soon as you get to campus. You won’t regret it.