Theory Meets Practice

Prior to being exposed to public accounting and Schneider Downs, the only experience I had to base my decision of a future profession in accounting was the knowledge I accumulated at the University of Pittsburgh. Professors lecturing about a wide variety of topics, from debits and credits to consolidating financial statements, aided me in developing what I thought was a grasp on the practice of accounting. Little did I know, I was only scratching the surface. Joining the Schneider Downs staff for the latter half of this summer is already, without a doubt, one of the most invaluable experiences of my professional career.

 When I started my first engagement, I felt a bit overwhelmed; nothing I had previously learned prepared me for the journey I was about to embark on. Luckily, the two associates on the engagement taught me more in the next week than I could have ever learned in a classroom, and I cannot thank them enough for doing so. The more applicable knowledge I continued to absorb in the field allowed me to reflect and relate on some of the topics I learned in college. As I began to work with different clients, I started to become more familiar with the process of an audit and what was expected of an auditor. I noticed myself becoming more analytical and critical, asking questions that I would have never asked had it not been for this experience.

As my internship comes to an end, I now understand why it is extremely important to gain experience in the field before graduation. By having a little taste of the world of public accounting, it has reassured me that I have made the right decision in my career choice. With my aspirations clear, the only way to fulfill that goal is to continue to learn and adapt to the expectations ahead of you, whether it is in the clasroom or on an engagement.

Read more about internship opportunities at Schneider Downs here.

Ryan McGoogan explains how Schneider Downs internship process helped him expand his knowledge of Accounting outside of the classroom.

You’ve heard our thoughts… We’d like to hear yours

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

Material discussed is meant for informational purposes only, and it is not to be construed as investment, tax, or legal advice. Please note that individual situations can vary. Therefore, this information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice.

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