A lot of the work we do at Blackden is advising candidates and that often involves getting an individual to think long term about their career aspirations in US tax.
I have been helping a candidate recently decide if they would go down the CPA route or not, as exam stress alongside normal working hours be a major factor influencing the decision. Most firms will allow some time off or either for you to work part-time but by all means not all of them.
I came across this great resource which helps set the 'discussion' out well. Whilst quite simplistic comparisons, this site may help get you to get your thoughts together if you're in a similar situation, although someone specific circumstance must also be taken into account.
Not all firms are the same in offering support during the CPA exam study period; some firms are truly excellent whilst others less so!
Difference between CPA and Tax Preparer
Both Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) and tax preparers are professionals authorized to prepare and file tax returns. However, in the context of CPA vs tax preparer, the primary difference lies in their scope of work, level of expertise, and licensure. While CPAs are licensed professionals offering a wide array of expert accounting services, tax preparers are non-licensed and specialize in only tax preparation.
Read more here https://www.wallstreetmojo.com/cpa-vs-tax-preparer/