OUR THOUGHTS ON:

The Switch from Accounting to Technology

Internship

By Garner Kraemer

Even as a student at Serra Catholic High School, I knew that I wanted to go to college to earn a degree in business. After only a few weeks in my first accounting course at Serra Catholic, I knew that I wanted to major in accounting. Choosing Robert Morris University was a no-brainer because of its well-known accounting program, five-year integrated master’s program and closeness to home. As a new student at RMU, I made sure to attend every event that related to accounting. I wanted to learn as much as I could about the profession and how to obtain a job after graduating. The professors and presenters at the events stressed how important internships are in order to obtain a full-time job. I started my first internship in the middle of my junior year in the internal audit department of a small public corporation. It was at this same time that I began to look into the master’s degree that I wanted to earn. At first, I wanted to obtain an MBA to earn the 150 credit hours necessary to become a CPA. Although, after discussions with professors and the realization of how important technology in business is today, I decided to apply for the integrated program to earn an M.S. in Cyber Security and Information Assurance.

This master’s degree opened up a new world of opportunities to consider when searching for future internships and full-time jobs. Not only did I have a background in accounting, but I would soon gain the knowledge of the information technology side of business. As I began searching for internships again in my senior year, I found myself looking for opportunities other than financial auditing, such as IT audit and risk assurance. The IT audit internship at Schneider Downs instantly stuck out to me, so I applied and hoped for the best. Not only did I apply for the opening, but I also participated in a mock interview with Schneider Downs a couple of weeks before my scheduled on-campus interview. I was extremely nervous going into the mock interview, but I knew that attending it would help me perfect my interview skills for the real thing.

After the mock interview, on-campus interview, and multiple office interviews, I finally received the offer letter that I had been waiting for from Schneider Downs. I met so many nice and personable people from Schneider Downs during my interview process that I knew right away that I was going to accept the offer. I already concluded that Schneider Downs would be a great place to gain the necessary experience to further my career and prepare for a full-time job, and my opinion was reassured shortly after I accepted the offer. Dan Desko, whom I interviewed with, offered to take me to lunch in order to keep in touch before I started my internship six months later. At lunch, Dan gave me a book that he wanted me to read before my internship. The book, titled A New Auditor’s Guide to Planning, Performing, and Presenting IT Audits, provided me with all the necessary information to prepare myself for the work that I would be involved with at Schneider Downs. This considerate gesture showed me that Schneider Downs does not treat its interns the way some larger companies might. I learned that Schneider Downs wants every intern to learn and prepare themselves for a future career as much as possible during their short time with the company.

As an intern, I have had the opportunity to be a part of a team and complete work that staff-level employees do on a regular basis. I have even been given the opportunity to be a member of the ISACA Security Awareness Day Committee to help prepare for the upcoming conference in December. I have learned so much and met so many amazing people throughout my internship at Schneider Downs, and it is not even half-way over yet. I am grateful for the internship opportunity that I have had and I look forward to the remainder of my time at Schneider Downs!

Contact us if you have questions regarding the Schneider Downs internship opportunities.

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The Schneider Downs Our Thoughts On blog exists to create a dialogue on issues that are important to organizations and individuals. While we enjoy sharing our ideas and insights, we’re especially interested in what you may have to say. If you have a question or a comment about this article – or any article from the Our Thoughts On blog – we hope you’ll share it with us. After all, a dialogue is an exchange of ideas, and we’d like to hear from you. Email us at contactSD@schneiderdowns.com.

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