Accounting Interns Receive Job Offers
May 07, 2014
ALLIANCE, Ohio – Many would be intimidated by an experience that involves 13-hour workdays, one-hour commutes (each way) and numerous hours completing audits and tax work, but University of Mount Union seniors Laura Coxe and Eric Ehrenberg seized the opportunity, securing full-time positions following graduation.
As accounting majors, Coxe of Ashtabula, OH and Ehrenberg of Salem, OH participated in the Department of Economics, Accounting and Business Administration’s newly developed Accounting Internship Program.
“Internships are extremely important for accounting majors,” said Ruth Pogacnik, associate professor of accounting. “An internship opportunity enables students to learn about things they can’t learn in a classroom setting. For example, they learn how to function in an office environment, how to adjust to a corporate culture and how to deal with deadlines and job-related stress.”
After discussing internship possibilities with their professors, networking while attending a Mount Union career fair and interviewing with professionals, Coxe and Ehrenberg landed semester-long internships at Novogradac and Company LLC, a national certified public accounting and counseling firm.
The internship was time-consuming and challenging, as Ehrenberg stated he both woke up and arrived home when it was dark. Coxe agreed, stating a typical day started at 5:30 a.m. and ended around 9:30 p.m. However, the experience also affirmed their chosen career path.
“About three months into my internship I realized that I loved what I was doing and the experience that I received validated my decision of having accounting as my major,” Coxe said.
“An internship helps students realize whether or not it’s something they want to do for the rest of their lives,” Ehrenberg added.
The students’ duties included completing planning, fund level, investment and concluding sections of audits, as well as dealing with Agreed Upon Procedures and preparing tax returns.
“Relevant experience is one of the biggest things employers look for when applying for a job,” Ehrenberg said. “If a student has a busy season internship under their belt, it makes them very marketable.”
Both Coxe and Ehrenberg were ecstatic to receive full time job offers as staff accountants following their company evaluations.
“I was sweating bullets and nervous that they were going to tell me I was doing awful and that I should consider another career path,” Coxe said. “They offered me the position and I went through about nine million emotions. I was shaking with excitement and relief for about two hours after accepting the offer; there’s no other feeling like it.”
Coxe and Ehrenberg are set to begin work full-time the week following their graduation on Saturday, May 10.
The Internship Program requires students to work for a minimum of 12 weeks accumulating at least 480 hours. This spring, six accounting majors, including four juniors and two seniors, took advantage of the opportunity, working as interns at firms in Alliance, Canton, Dover and Boardman.
“I am so proud of all six interns who were in the field this semester,” stated Pogacnik. “They really did an amazing job and the feedback I have gotten back from the firms is very positive. I am looking forward to growing this program to include more firms and more students.”
To learn more about Mount Union’s accounting degree, visit www.mountunion.edu/accounting.