2020 was supposed to be my year. I was supposed to be gearing up for my final football season, walking across the stage at Duquesne University’s graduation and beginning an internship at one of the top firms in Pittsburgh. Obviously, these plans were changed drastically on March 13, when we were told to pack up and leave campus. This was a shock to all of us at Duquesne. My head filled with negative thoughts about how this change would impact my life. After a day or so of naysaying, I chose to flip the situation I was in into a positive. I began using my newfound free time to study harder and prepare myself for the upcoming football season. From March to May, I focused on things that were going to make me a better student, athlete and person. During these months, however, I had one concern: Would I be able to gain the internship experience I was hoping for in the new environment created by the pandemic?
I was not sure how the summer internship experience would pan out. A lot of my classmates at Duquesne had their internships cancelled by firms in the Pittsburgh area. Not me. Not Schneider Downs. When I received the news that SD was sending me a computer and delivering a fully remote internship experience, I had mixed emotions. I was excited that I was still going to have the internship experience that I had hoped for, but I was also nervous. I was nervous because I had no idea that working remote with Schneider Downs would be as easy as it is. As an intern, you come in not knowing much about public accounting. You are very dependent on the help of the staff and seniors at the firm to teach you how to perform the various tasks in an audit. This was the part I was most nervous about. I was pleased to find that communication and teamwork did not stop just because in-person meetings stopped. The virtual internship taught me a tremendous amount, not only about the world of auditing, but about myself as well.
My experience during the virtual summer internship has been extremely positive. I have been able to meet so many people in the firm from the staff to CEOs. I have been afforded the opportunity to learn from a wide range of people with many different backgrounds. I am looking forward to taking what I have learned at Schneider Downs and implementing it in order grow both personally and professionally in the years to come.
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