Archive for the 'Accounting' Category

Internship Spotlight: Chao Lee, Voith Paper, Inc.

Chao Lee, Accounting Major

Overview

I am currently interning at Voith Paper, Inc. located in Appleton as an accounting intern. Voith Paper is a family-owned manufacturing company founded in 1867 with approximately 40,000 employees in 280 locations worldwide. To this day, it is still a family-owned company and one of the largest, directed by a management-holding from its headquarters in Heidenheim, Germany. The company consists of four main commercial sectors: Voith Paper, Voith Hydro, Voith Turbo, and Voith Industrial Services.

How did I obtain my internship? Resources I used?

I learned of this internship through our very own internship director, Jessie Pondell. As I was in the middle of applying and interviewing with different companies, Jessie emailed me about this opportunity and I applied for it through Titan Jobs. I was contacted by phone to go in for an on-site interview where I met and interviewed with the tax department team. About a week later, I was offered the position and started in June 2012.

What feelings did I have going into the internship?

Like many students, I was very nervous for many reasons. First of all, this was a full-time co-op dealing with high-level accounting and tax work, and on top of that, this was my first internship, so I didn’t know what to expect. I haven’t gotten very far in my education yet and I especially haven’t taken a tax course so I was afraid I didn’t have all the necessary technical skills. But on the flip side, I was also very grateful and excited going into this internship. I cared a lot about my accounting classes and work; therefore, I couldn’t wait to get hands-on experience in the field!

What are some of my favorite projects?

The quarterly tax installments and year-end tax provisions and extensions are a lot of fun. Not only am I learning a lot about the book-to-tax process and all the tax principles and regulations that come with it, but I am also challenged and kept busy with these projects. Another project I enjoyed includes the Process Documentation project that is new this season. Documenting each tax process from beginning to end has helped me see the department’s projects and tasks in a larger picture, enabling me to easily understand how and why they do it.

My Future

I am very content in my major selection thanks to Voith. My real-world experience in the accounting field reaffirms me that accounting work involves all the things I enjoy doing. I plan to intern more throughout my remaining time at UWO and hopefully end up with the perfect career after graduation. My ability to take on work and problem-solve through the challenging responsibilities at this organization has given me the confidence and skill sets to do anything. Nothing’s impossible.

Internship Spotlight: Michelle Murray, Accounting and Finance Major

Michelle Murray, Accounting and Finance Major

How I Obtained My Internship

Each year the athletic department looks for athletes to work as interns. My supervisor asked the coaches for candidates and my coach referred me. As a student athlete, this internship has tied my extra-curricular with work experience. In my internship, I am exposed to the background work of the department which is much different from what I initially thought from a student athlete perspective. There are many interactions with people even with a job like social media where the results are only seen online. I’ve had the opportunity to do anything from shoot videos, facilitate halftime activities and other events throughout competitions, and monitor the online traffic to our sites and quantify it.

What I do In My Internship

As a social media intern, I am responsible for posting information related to the athletic department and UWO online. There are a number of resources such as Twitter, Facebook, and Hootsuite that I use to carry out my responsibilities. Being someone who is familiar with and uses these online mediums already, allows me to be more successful. The older generations in the department appreciate having an intern that is more connected to this new technology to be able to do this type of work.

What I Learned

The most important thing I learned at my internship is whether you are speaking to your boss or an audience of hundreds of people over the internet, it is critical that you can communicate clearly and effectively.

Internship Spotlight: Maribeth Schneider,Jorgenson Accounting and Tax Services

Maribeth Schneider, Accounting and Human Resources

Company Overview

Jorgenson Accounting and Tax Services is located in Waupaca, Wisconsin. It is an S Corporation that has been in business for 11 years. More than 50% of the business handles tax services, as well as other services that include payroll, sales tax, and general ledger.

 

How I Obtained my Internship

I used a personal network to find my internship. I was casually talking to my dad’s accountant about school and how I also needed to find an internship when she suggested interning with her. Being able to find an internship with Jorgenson Accounting and Tax Services was a great relief for me because it is in the same city as where I live. As a commuter student, this took off the stress of having to manage any additional traveling for school and work.

 

Incorporated Coursework

Any job assignments that I have been given, I can relate to my current and past coursework. When I am reviewing or entering general ledgers for clients, I am able to identify what transactions belong in the different accounts from Intermediate Accounting. I was first introduced to Quickbooks in Accounting Information Systems, which is the system I now use at my internship. The most relevant area includes tax questions from clients, which are practically the same applications drawn from my tax class. It is a reassuring experience to be able to take what I have learned in the classroom and apply it in a workplace setting.

 

My Future

My supervisor is very encouraging to me about the future. We have already discussed the possibility of me staying at Jorgenson Accounting and Tax Services after my semester has ended. Along with promoting a continued job position, she has stressed the importance of taking the CPA exam. This has always been the goal for me from the start. After going to school and working with accounting, I am positive that this is the right career path for me. I am excited to finish my internship with the prospect of continuing working where I am, as well as graduating in May and continuing with my goals and career.

Internship Spotlight: Aaron Sellier, RR Donnelley

Aaron Sellier, Accounting

Company Overview

Before being acquired by RR Donnelley, the company I am currently interning for was known as the Banta Corporation of Menasha Wisconsin.  They were a major printing and imaging company for over one hundred years in Wisconsin.  In 2006, Banta was sold to the Chicago based firm RR Donnelley, another commercial printing company.

When Did I Start and How Did I Obtain My Internship?

I started in May of 2011 as an Accounting Intern.  The school’s resources such as the career fair and titanjobs both provided me with interviews at a handful of companies.  RR Donnelley was at the top of my list because of their positive image in our community and there is a large opportunity for advancement after graduation.

Highlights So Far

Aside from my monthly duties and projects, there are a few things that standout for me so far in my experience here at RRD.

I was lucky to participate in an inventory audit by our internal audit group from corporate RRD.  This was a large scale audit that investigated our physical items on hand and also the financial documents related.  I was able to shadow one of the auditors through their process.

Being put in charge of an annual physical asset audit was my second highlight.  Each year, corporate RRD requires a listing of assets be evaluated for disposals, transfers, ext…  My supervisor gave me the responsibility to conduct this audit for each department.

The main highlight for me was my interaction with so many professionals.  Throughout my time there, there were people from every department that I had either worked with or at least had a significant conversation with.  The connections I made are most valuable to me from this experience.

Advice from My Experience

The one thing I would like to pass on from my experience is that a lack in confidence is normal before landing an internship.  I wasn’t sure if I was capable of reaching an internship, let-alone performing well in one.  I wish that I had not put so much stress on myself early on because now I have realized that my internship was actually there to build my confidence.  This is something I will remember when applying for jobs out of college.

Internship Spotlight: Adam Schubert, First Source Worldwide

Adam Schubert, Accounting

A First Source Experience

                My name is Adam Schubert, an Accounting major at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh.  I plan on graduating after this upcoming spring semester in 2013.  I have completed much of my coursework required to obtain my degree with a few classes left for one final year of college!  I had still needed an internship though and was pretty stressed out about finding one.  And then I found an accounting internship with First Source Worldwide.

First Source Worldwide is a supplier that manufactures and distributes chemicals for other company’s needs.  Some of their clientele include Rawlings Sporting Goods, Hanes, and Fruit of the Loom.  Many of the chemicals they provide are pigments/colorants used in clothes that we wear every day.

I had stumbled across this internship by signing up for the email program offered through the Internship Program at UW-Oshkosh.  I received an email stating that interns were needed at this company and responded right away.  After completing an interview, FSW had contacted me and they offered me an internship.  I was able to start mid February 2012.

At first I was really nervous about this new endeavor.  I was unsure what to expect besides what they had told me during the interview where they gave me a vague list of responsibilities.  After about a week I realized what I had gotten myself into.  It seemed overwhelming at first but as time went on, I became very comfortable in my role at First Source Worldwide as an intern.

I have been able to incorporate a great deal of my previous coursework in this internship.  One of the courses that I have been able to apply the most is Bus 305 (Accounting Information Systems).  This class had taught me to use Peachtree which is very similar to QuickBooks.  I use this everyday when entering and approving bills.  Another course that I am using in my position at FSW is Quantitative Business Analysis (QBA).  I use Excel every single day and this class has helped me become efficient in using the program.

My main responsibilities on a daily basis consist of entering and approving bills for both U.S. and Mexico operations.  I also help occasionally with some costing projects in order to supply the business with information that helps them price their products competitively.  I also help out with the purchasing department when they need the additional support.  This has exposed me to various areas of the business giving me a fuller understanding of the business operates and a broader overall experience.

Although I have been exposed to various departments of the company, this exposure reassures me that I would like to stick with the accounting field.  I love everything about it and I continue to learn every day I’m at my internship.  I have recently been offered to continue this internship throughout the upcoming school year and I look forward to the additional experiences ahead of me.

Internship Spotlight: Chad Durkee, Oshkosh Corporation

 

Chad Durkee, Accounting and Finance

 

Oshkosh Corporation: Overview and Background

Oshkosh Corporation is a top performing company in manufacturing, designing, and marketing a wide array of specialty vehicles, access equipment, and truck bodies. Oshkosh Corporation has been around since 1917, and what started as an early pioneer of four-wheel drive technology, has grown into something much more than that.  Worldwide, Oshkosh Corporation currently employs roughly 13,100 people.  Oshkosh Corporation is mostly known for its defense segment, which is where most of the income comes from.  The defense segment accounts for 57% of the company’s operations and Oshkosh Corporation has been doing business with the Department of Defense for over 80 years.

 

My Role

As a treasury intern, I am part of a small treasury department located in Corporate Finance.  Daily, I have many tasks which have strict time deadlines throughout the day.  I am mainly responsible for reconciling bank accounts, which includes verifying incoming and outgoing wire and ACH payments.  I also post foreign exchange rates company-wide for everyone’s use, and compile a spreadsheet throughout the day.  I am responsible for funding the cash necessary to pay our employees daily and wire funds to foreign employees.  At the conclusion of the day, I leave a daily debt message for senior management, which includes both the CFO and CEO of the company.

At month end, I also assist in creating financial reports and doing fee analyses of our bank accounts.  Lately, I also have been given special projects to complete when I have extra time.  Currently, I am working with people in other departments to change payment methods for disbursements we presently make, which will reduce our monthly fee charges.

 

My Advice

The earlier you think about your future, the better off you will be. Career services and titan jobs are two great resources which are available for you.  Post your resume to titan jobs as early as possible, and update it as frequently as possible.  When I gained this internship with Oshkosh Corporation I was a sophomore here at UW-Oshkosh, not actively pursuing an internship.  I became aware of the position solely because I had my resume on titan jobs and was notified that I qualified for the position.  Also, attend the career fairs on campus.  You may be uncomfortable with the thought of talking directly to strangers, but networking is a great way to get your foot in the door at one of the prestigious companies at the fair.

Internship Spotlight: Jesse Christianson, Thedacare

Jesse Christianson, Accounting

Company Profile

The beginnings of Thedacare can be traced back almost 100 years ago to the opening of Theda Clark Medical Center in Neenah, WI. From the humble beginnings of a 20-bed hospital, Thedacare has grown into the largest employer in Northeast Wisconsin boasting over 6,100 employees. It currently consists of a family of five area hospitals, 22 physician locations, multiple senior care facilities, and numerous foundations. Thedacare is a not-for-profit organization and is owned entirely by the communities which it serves. They are the recipients of numerous awards including 2011 Business of the Year, awarded by the Post-Crescent for their positive impact within the community.

Getting the Internship

I am a nontraditional student with family responsibilities.  I needed to find an internship that was within a reasonable commuting distance. This worried me because limiting the geographic area in which I could search for an internship also limited the pool of internships available to me. I was afraid it would be incredibly difficult to land a quality, challenging position in which I could hone my communication and analytical skills. So I enlisted the help of several faculty members and paid several visits to the COB internship office. To make a long story short, a couple weeks later I was offered a position to work in Thedacare’s corporate accounting office located in downtown Appleton.  I am extremely happy here. Thedacare is the perfect fit for me. I thank all those involved in getting me here.

My Role at Thedacare

Right now it is tax season at Thedacare. This is my main focus right now and will be for the next couple of months. I am currently creating tax documents which breakdown compensation, revenue, and expense figures. I need to ensure that these figures tie into last year’s audited trial balance. In addition to learning about not-for-profit tax, I am also responsible for creating, charting, and sending out all corporate invoices, as well as month-end reconciliations. Once tax season is done I look forward to getting involved in the management of fixed assets and an upcoming insurance renewal. By the end of my internship I will have a wide variety of experiences in almost every aspect of accounting.

My Advice

My advice to anyone currently looking for an internship is to find a company to intern with that fits not only your expectations regarding experience gained but that fits your personality. Company culture has a great deal to do with how happy you will be during the course of your internship. Don’t be afraid to ask questions during an interview in order to discover the culture of the office. The better you fit in at a company the more comfortable you are and the more likely you are to ask questions and to learn. Don’t give up if you fail to get an offer after the first few interviews. You will be the perfect fit somewhere. Be persistent!

Internship Spotlight: Jamie Churchill, Materials Converting, LLC Company

Jamie Churchill, Accounting

Company Overview

Materials Converting, LLC is located in West Allis, WI.  They specialize in processing primarily flexible materials.  These processes include converting materials by sheeting, slitting, laminating, shearing, die cutting and any combination of these to meet the customer’s needs.  Because service is the most important aspect of the business, they strive to provide quality products in as little time as possible.

How I Got the Position

I received my internship through personal connections.  While going through the process of looking for an internship, I was using Linked In as one of my primary resources.  I noticed that the owner of Materials Converting, LLC, who is also my sister’s boss, had viewed my profile.  After mentioning it to my sister she put in a good word for me.  I emailed the owner my resume and met with him and his wife. They then offer me the position.

My Role

My responsibilities consist of every day accounting tasks done by the organization.  I am doing everything the accountants that actually work for the company do, which I love.  This includes the daily task of creating and sending out invoices, receiving and entering cash receipts, and matching purchase orders to received invoices.  Weekly I enter payables and payroll for both our company and our sister companies.  At the month end I enter the bank reconciliation and soon I will be involved in a quarter end.

Am I happy with my major selection?

Yes, because there are many different aspects associated with this job.  I am gradually beginning to understand the company, its customers, and suppliers.  I am learning something new everyday while still doing the staple responsibilities, such as invoicing and cash receipts.

Correlation to Course Work:

The basic knowledge I learned in my accounting classes comes in handy.  By knowing the basics, I can see how the transactions flow through and impact the organization.  Journal entries aren’t just used in the classroom!  Also, we use a computerized system here at Materials Converting and the experiences I had in my Accounting Information Systems course definitely helped introduce me to using a computerized accounting system.

 

 

Internship Spotlight: Tasha Gosselin, Deloitte

Tasha Gosselin, Tax Intern, Deloitte

Company Overview

 Deloitte is one of the leading professional services organizations in the United States, specializing in audit, tax, consulting and financial advisory services with clients in more than 20 industries. We provide powerful business solutions to some of the world’s most well-known and respected companies, including more than 75 percent of the Fortune 100.

How I Got the Job

Everybody says that networking is the key, and its true. None of the “Big 4” accounting firms will recruit at UW Oshkosh because we are too small for them. I first applied online, but to a recruiter, those applications all look the same. Luckily, someone I knew through my previous internship had started working at Deloitte as a first year. I contacted her via LinkedIn and asked her if she would mind connecting me with the recruiter.  If I hadn’t had that connection to make me stand out, I never would have gotten my foot in the door.

My Role

My internship was in the audit area. Our first week was training in the office, after that we got assigned to our clients. I learned different methods to test areas of the audit and how to document support for each area. Because I was on private clients, our teams were smaller and I got exposed to several different parts of the audit that I might not have had the chance to otherwise. My favorite part of the job was when I got included on some of the conversations about how to apply theory to a particular accounting situation.

My Experience

They aren’t kidding when they say you will be working long hours. Once “busy season” got into full swing, I was working 70 hour weeks. I though it would be really difficult, but when you have so much to do, the time flies! I think the most difficult part of my internship was living in a hotel for 7 weeks straight. All of my clients were out of town so we stayed in hotels. On Saturdays, we worked from the office so I only had Sunday morning and afternoon to do laundry and get ready for the next week. There are some perks to being out of town; all of your meals are paid for and you don’t have to worry about doing stuff around the house after you work a 14 hour day. In the end, all the work was worth it because I got a job offer. I start in September of 2013 after I graduate and pass my CPA exam.

My Advice

Get involved in a club and go to campus events. Anybody can get straight A’s but it takes a lot of hard work to do well in school and be involved in other activities. Employers really look at those things because showing you can balance those things in your life right now shows them that you will be able to do it when you work for them.

Internship Spotlight: Jill Niles, Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP

Jill Niles, Tax Intern Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP

Company Overview: Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP

Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP, founded in 1931, is a full-service accounting and advisory firm. Baker Tilly is ranked as one of the top 20 largest accounting and advisory firms in the U.S. The firm has office locations across in the Midwest and east coast in Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis, New York, Washington D.C., and Wisconsin.

Baker Tilly offers traditional tax, accounting, and audit services, but its professionals also have expertise in the areas of private investment banking, mergers and acquisitions, management consulting, estate and financial planning, and other service areas.

A few of the industries the firm serves include construction/real estate, government contractors, health care, higher education, manufacturing/distribution, non-for profit, renewable energy, and retail and commercial. Employees generally specialize in one of these industry areas and work with a team to serve their clients.

My Experience at Baker Tilly

I began my tax season internship at Baker Tilly on February 2, 2012. I worked as a part-time tax intern for the firm’s manufacturing team. Because I was working part time and started my internship later due to a study abroad opportunity, my duties at the firm were strictly tax related.

My work in February began with preparing personal property taxes for clients. Preparing these returns involved a lot of classification, reconciliation, and problem solving which I loved. The remainder of my internship I focused on preparing individual returns. These were more difficult, but I found it so interesting to learn about our clients as well as tax laws and processes.

I had the opportunity to work very closely with the members of my team. Several people would work to complete returns for the same clients, so there was a strong sense of teamwork and communication. This was one of my favorite parts about my internship. I developed professional relationships with my coworkers, and learned so many things from them all.

The most challenging part of my internship was the amount of hours I worked and how much work there was to be done. Balancing my work and school definitely required careful time management. I was very impressed with how Baker Tilly empowers, motivates, and entertains its employees during this potentially stressful time. We would have team lunches, outings, March Madness Tournament, Chili Cook-off, and the end of the season party. This made the work fun and always gave us something to look forward to.

Overall, I had an excellent experience interning at Baker Tilly. I really enjoyed the work I did, the people I worked with, and the company culture. I definitely feel that I worked very hard, but I also had a lot of fun at my internship. It is important to enjoy where you work, especially in an environment such as public accounting where the hours are long. I really enjoyed the challenge of my internship and the opportunity to constantly learn new things. Most importantly, my internship helped me to confirm that accounting a great career fit for me.

Advice to Other Students

The best advice I can give to other students is to step out of your comfort zone. I am naturally a shy person and find networking situations difficult. However, as soon as I began to put myself in those situations more and more, I found incredible opportunities opening up for me. My confidence improved immensely and I was able to gain the professional experiences I had been looking for.

I would also suggest to anyone looking to do a future internship to get the most out of the opportunity. Do not be afraid to ask lots of questions. After all, the purpose of the experience is to learn. I found that I learned much more when I tried to understand not only how to do something, but also why it was done that way. Also, the more you ask questions and interact with your co-workers, the more confident you feel in yourself and your work.

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