By the numbers: Accountant analyzes her return to GTCC

Published on: January 19, 2023
Laura Altizer
Laura Altizer is a senior accountant for budgets and construction finance at GTCC.

There are times Laura Altizer regrets that she never ventured far from the Greensboro area. The administration at Guilford Technical Community College may be thankful she didn't.

Altizer is a senior accountant for budgets and construction finance at GTCC, a position she's held for two years. She previously worked at the college for five years before leaving for a government job in High Point. That was after graduating from Northwest Guilford High School, followed by an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University and a master's from the UNC Greensboro.

"I've always said I'd like to live somewhere else just to try it, but this is the way it has worked out," Altizer said. "I went to college at Wake, then moved to Winston from Greensboro, and then lived in Randolph County for 20 years. This is a great place to live. It's a growing area, but the growth isn't insane. I joke about living somewhere else, but this is a great place to live."

And there's no place she'd rather be working than GTCC.

"I came (back) in at a good time to learn the ropes. Some of the big projects were winding down when I came back, but now with state funding gearing up on a lot of projects, it's getting busier. It's going to be an exciting time," said Altizer, who worked in High Point for 10 years.

In her first stint at GTCC, Altizer worked in institutional research, gathering and analyzing data. This time around, it's all about numbers and spreadsheets, accompanied by just a bit of irony.

"I only took two accounting classes in college; my degree work was not in accounting," said Altizer, whose master's degree is in public administration.

Altizer got extensive on-the-job training when working for the City of High Point, which has proven invaluable in her new position.

"I went to work in local government in High Point, in the budget area. That's where I learned this," she said.

Altizer's work hours are filled with numbers these days, but numbers that come from vastly different sources that impact GTCC in a huge way.

"It's a two-fold job, but it all deals with the budget and finance piece," she said. "I'm responsible for the state, county, and institutional budget at the college. I'm also responsible for the financial side of the construction budget and financial reporting."

Altizer said during her previous work at GTCC that she worked a great deal with student data, student outcomes, and student surveys. While she had little contact with students in her official capacity then, she helped with open registration and other interactive events with students. That is something she misses in her new position.

"When I worked here before, I had a lot more exposure to our programs and what students were doing. It was really fascinating, and we were growing astronomically," Altizer said.

"I'm rarely with students with this job, but I'm the type of person, if I see students on campus, if somebody looks lost, I'm going to help them. I try to take advantage of all the opportunities I can to do things with students. I value that interaction when I get it."

While Altizer is out of public view these days, she understands exactly how important her job is to the college.

"It's work that must be done. I think the financial area is extremely important to the function of the college," she said. "We must get the bills paid, and we must have a budget. Without a budget, we couldn't operate."

And with Altizer behind the numbers, you can be sure it will operate at the highest degree of efficiency.

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