Newly revamped, this year's Accounting and Finance Day combined industry days into a single event with a reorganized structure. The format's success was evidenced by the attendance of more than 180 eager students.
Hosted by the Kogod Center for Career Development (KCCD) and co-sponsored by Kogod's Accounting Club and Kogod Finance Group, the day-long event focused on career and networking opportunities for current students.
"It's important for students to understand the nature of the hiring timeline," said Arlene Hill, Director of the KCCD. "Accounting and finance application deadlines come quicker than most."
Over 40 organizations in the areas of investment management, financial services, banking, insurance, staffing, education, defense, hospitality, IT, and real estate participated in the career and networking fair, including:
- Merrill Lynch Wealth Management
- Citi Global Transaction Services
- Becker Professional Education
- First Washington Realty, Inc.
- And many more
Many employers were impressed by the students they interacted with.
"They have all been very professional and well-spoken," Shannon Mahoney said, Human Resources Generalist at Kearney and Company. "They may have done a lot of research on their own, or they have been prepared by the career center. Either way, they have been great."
The day opened with an Accounting Panel, hosted by executive-in-residence Emily Lindsay. A Finance Panel, hosted by associate professor Philip English followed. Each panel represented firms both large and small and featured several AU alumni—six of 14 panelists.
Though held separately, the two panels touched on similar topics, including the career paths of the panelists, current challenges in the finance and accounting industries, and career advice for students.
"Nothing is going to be handed to you," said Eric Green, Director of Research & Senior Portfolio Manager at Penn Capital.
"It's all about managing your own career," said Hakeem Khwaja, a Senior Manager of Federal Audit Practice at KPMG. Other tips offered by the panelists were:
- Make yourself indispensable,
- Understand what employers are asking of you,
- Find a mentor,
- Improve communication skills,
- Never count yourself out or exclude yourself from opportunities, and
- Be willing to learn.
Donald Jackson, who represented the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, noted how targeted the students at Kogod are. "They seem very aware of what they’re looking to do," he said.
The next industry-specific career event, Consulting Day, will be held on October 5.