College does not prepare you for the real world in the way you would expect. The unlimited number of homework problems you have due and vocab words you have to memorize make you question how much of this is actually going to apply when you get a real job. Weeks go by and you forget half of the things you discussed in class until it’s time to take the final and you have to learn it all over again. I will say, the things that stick with you are the important things. For example, how in your freshman year you begin to attend all of these Student Accounting Association meetings and career fairs and you’re thinking: “How does any of this even apply to me?”
Then you learn about all of these real world jobs, what it takes to get there, and how you shouldn’t limit yourself just because of where you’re from or what school you go to. You’ll begin to realize that all of these firms are out there looking for you. You just need to find one that is the best fit for you, and that’s why I chose Schneider Downs.
It is not until you get out into a real job that those words you learn in college start making sense. You get thrown into scenarios where it is actually important to understand the concept of materiality and the financial statement assertions. All of this started making sense to me when I started my internship, and I had to drive out to my first client location in the week that I first started. The opportunities I have been given, and continue to be given, reassure me that I made the right choice on where to spend my summer. Everyone that I work with is understanding of where I am at in this point of my life, and encouraging to me in all the work that I do and about what I can achieve.
This internship has given me the opportunity to move from my small town to the city for the first time in my life. It still feels great to be walking around downtown Pittsburgh and to look up at the One PPG building and think, “Wow, I actually work there.” Because of my internship experience, I am proud of what I have accomplished so far in college. But, after working in a real firm, I realized there is a lot more in my professional career I have yet to accomplish. Working as an intern at Schneider Downs has given me a more clear understanding of this, and has shown me what I have to look forward to following graduation.