Full-time Accounting Success for Kadeja Abbott!

Kadeja has to be one of my favorite students!    She is another example of a student who has found incredible success because she has put in the work!  Kadeja is an excellent example of what can happen when you plan early for your career success, and use the power of networking to seal the deal.  Her impressive GPA and her strong leadership skills have made employers sit up and take notice.  I had just featured Kadeja and other NABA members in a post on Nov. 2nd.  Kadeja won a $4,000 scholarship on behalf of the NABA Eastern Region Chapter. She was also chosen for this year’s Outstanding Student Award. How did she land her amazing full-time position?  Here are her own words:

I picked up this position through the NABA Eastern Region Student Conference 2017 that took place in Norfolk, VA. I had 5 interviews that day and Allmond & Company was the only company that called me back for a 2nd interview. I was actually shocked because I felt like I bombed my interview, but they must’ve seen something in me! I scheduled the interview and met with the CEO of the company. We met for about an hour and it was truly just a conversation and a time to get to know him, the firm, and the employees. He also told me he wanted to recruit more people from VCU! I was given a job offer the next day after our interview! What excites me about this new position is it focuses on governmental accounting, which is pretty interesting and unique in itself. What’s even more exciting is the company is minority-owned and has been in operation for nearly 40 years. I will also be seeing something new with my relocation for the job in MD! I’ll be right in between my first home New York and my 2nd home, Virginia.
Recommendations:
1. If you are currently looking for a position in accounting and are comfortable with the idea of relocating or commuting, please contact CEO, Marvin Allmond at mallmond@allmondcpa.com  for job opportunities with your resume.
2. Even if you are at your lowest point in life and truly can’t understand why a company hasn’t hired you yet, don’t worry! Keep pushing because everyone knows your worth and your talents. Keep up the faith and keep working hard because you will pique a company’s interest in you! Just know that it doesn’t occur overnight! That’s the beauty of faith; you can’t see it!
3. Always network! Join an organization at VCU or even outside of VCU. The point is to always network and meet new people. It’s usually not about what you know all the time, but who you know! I would like to say that I am apart of communities within VCU and outside of VCU. I am the President of  NABA at VCU, I am alumni to a Richmond based non-profit organization, Partnership for the Future, I’ve participated in the Volunteer for Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA), I am a student of the Honors College, and I have a mentor through VCU BizConnect! Get involved with your community! You never know who you might meet! But keep in mind, be genuine with your networks! You can be professionally personal. Don’t limit your conversations to the jobs you want. Ask them about their journey and their goals too!
Kadeja Abbott, Senior,  Accounting and Human Resources major.  President of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA)

Graduate: May 2018
Company name: Allmond & Company located in Landover, MD
Title Position: Staff Auditor
Start: May 29, 2018

Keith Willett: An Accounting Success Story that makes us all Proud!

This is a person who has clearly done all the right things, and all of this hard work has paid off.   Keith made sure that he had all of the qualifications he needed to find academic and job success.  He is an accounting major who did not hesitate to get connected with Career Services to begin the prep process for the Fall Accounting Season in Fall 2016.  As a matter of fact, Keith started 6 months in advance with reshaping his resume, and cover letter, preparing an elevator pitch, practicing his interviewing answers, networking with employers, and participating in leadership activities.  Not only did he make sure that all of the career services activities were completed, he also built meaningful relationships with accounting professionals, and he took his classes seriously.

Keith had multiple interviews and internship offers for the fall 2016 and the fall 2017 recruiting season.  I am extremely proud to announce that Keith has landed the full-time accounting position of his dreams, he has become an incredible leader for Beta Alpha Psi and has a perfect GPA.  Keith, congratulations for being a wonderful role model, and an excellent student. I have certainly enjoyed getting to know you and working with you and I am excited to post your story on my Blog!

Keith’s words:

I have officially accepted a full time offer with Crowe Horwath LLP as a Staff Auditor in Knoxville, Tennessee.  Career services has been an excellent place for me to go to.  Darlene and her staff have helped me greatly along the way at VCU.  Make sure to knock out some internships while you are in school because it will pay off in the end.  As a veteran, VCU School of Business has provided me with a lot of opportunities with the diverse environment I was used to while I served active duty in the Navy.  I would not have gotten this opportunity without the help of Beta Alpha Psi and networking.  When I was at our Beta Alpha Psi national meeting this summer, I met a fellow BAP member at a school in Tennessee who interned with Crowe Horwath.  He put my resume through to Crowe Horwath and here I am now with a full time offer.  The power of networking is amazing, no matter where you are.  I can’t stress enough to always network with other people.  The best networking happens in the classroom with other students.  Make sure you represent yourself well to others because these are the people you will be working with.  Make sure you are an asset when you do group projects with others because these same people may be the key to getting a job you want in the future.

I am the President of Beta Alpha Psi.  If you would like to join or have any questions, please feel free to contact me at (willettkj@vcu.edu).  Also, if you are interested in Crowe Horwath and are looking to go to the DC metro area, feel free to contact me.

 

Connie Tran: Full-Time Success at Dominion Energy!

My name is Connie Tran. I’m a senior dual majoring in finance and marketing with a minor in economics. I will be graduating in May 2018. I was a finance intern at Dominion Energy this past summer and was extended a full-time offer to be an associate financial analyst after graduation. I have accepted the offer and will begin in July 2018!  I’m excited for the opportunity to be exposed to many different areas in finance through a rotational program.
The job search process can definitely be tough especially in such a competitive market. The thing that made me stand out the most was my leadership experience. Throughout my time at VCU, I have been actively involved in student organizations. I’ve held positions such as co-president, treasurer, community chair, and student ambassador. So although I may not have had much professional finance experience in the beginning, I was able to gain many skills through student organizations that set me apart from others such as time management, communication, and the ability to problem solve and work in teams. I also often found that there were situations I encountered in student organizations that were extremely applicable to behavioral interview questions so I was able to answer interview questions without hesitation. My biggest piece of advice is for all students to join a student organization and be actively involved. It’ll be an opportunity to make new friends and gain a resume booster!

IT Success at CarLotz For Malik Hicks!

We are excited to hear from Malik.  Here are his own words with going through the process of finding an internship this fall!
Time and time again, I kept asking myself “What am I doing wrong? Why can’t I seem to get hired? Is it because of my lack of experience in the technological field? But isn’t that what an internship is for?” I felt lost to answer this question as I could always get my foot in the door to as far as first and second interviews for whatever position I applied for. But it wasn’t until I started revisiting the career services again for the school year that I learned… I wasn’t doing anything wrong. I was doing everything right.
I first started visiting the career fair the first semester of my junior year as I had just switched to become an IS Major during the spring semester of my sophomore year.  It was a whole new experience as it allowed me the opportunity to receive help with my resume and actually get the feeling of how an actual interview was conducted.
But ultimately,  the best part about going to career services was being able to meet the staff and seeing how personable they were with me as I could feel their support as each and everyone one of them wished for my success and I loved that. It was because of that support that I went to the Career Fair with confidence and and never gave up when applying to job positions while improving who I was at the same time.

 

So, to all my fellow individuals who feel this way, please go to Career Services as they can really help.  I am a living example of how they changed me. For me, I truly thank Darlene, Laura, and Madeline for opening their schedules to help me.
And now, I look forward to starting my fall internship with CarLotz this week and gaining the experience that it has to offer!
Malik Hicks, Information Systems major, May 2018
Congratulations to you Malik and thanks for sharing your info for the Blog!

Accounting/Human Resources Major, Curtis Holloway, is a STAR at BDO!

Please see the article below which was shared on the BDO news world page.  The #BDOInternLife campaign is put on nationwide by the Campus Recruiting team. 

Greater Washington D.C. Assurance Intern Curtis Holloway’s personal motto? “Stay hungry.” That’s something many people who know him are already familiar with. In fact, when speaking at the Virginia Commonwealth University’s (VCU) leadership studies program’s graduation, he asked the audience how to stay inspired … they all shouted back: “stay hungry!”   Holloway has made it his mission to explore both the Assurance and Tax business lines before starting his public accounting career. His first internship was in Tax, and as he nears the end of his second internship, he can say “mission accomplished.” A senior with a double major in accounting and human resources, Holloway says he will miss his VCU professors when he graduates in December and receives his bachelor’s degree and starts studying for the CPA, as they taught him the importance of taking initiative and meeting new people. 

LIFE AT BDO: AIN’T HIS FIRST RODEO  This summer, as an Assurance intern, Holloway supports team engagements and assists in year-end and employee benefit audits. He shares that the support he receives from associates, managers and partners has left a lasting impression on how he views BDO professionals. “I’m treated like a professional, and I always feel like I work with BDO, not for BDO,” he says. “It’s not a competition. Everyone’s always willing to help each other out, and I like that very much about my team.”   For interns unsure whether to pursue a career in Assurance or Tax, Holloway shares his perspective, “This is your future, not anyone else’s. I try to meet with people from both sides to get their advice and help me feel comfortable about my decision,” he says. After interning for both practices, Holloway is still gathering information before he chooses where to continue. “I know that whichever business line I end up in, I’ll feel comfortable with my decision after the research I’ve put in to determine the best fit for me.”   Staying true to his motto, Holloway has some advice for future interns, “Stay hungry and continue to learn new things while giving your best and showing your drive,” he says. Even more, Holloway has a unique way of viewing his day-to-day professional experience. “I don’t have to come to work, I get to come to work and learn something new and exciting every day.”

LIFE OUTSIDE OF WORK: MAKING IT COUNT

Holloway at the Residential Life & Housing Banquet after being a resident advisor for two years.

Holloway at the Residential Life & Housing Banquet after being a resident advisor for two years.

In his spare time, Holloway enjoys hanging with friends, meeting new people, going to the gym and reading leadership books. “The best part about meeting new people is trying to make them laugh,” he adds.   Holloway also thanks Assurance Senior Associate Shafaq Majid for her guidance throughout his internship, as well as Nonprofit Assurance Associate Sean Herrity, Transaction Advisory Services Senior Associate Chris West and Tax Senior Manager Nick Dulo for helping him grow as a leader throughout his internship experience. “My mentors have all been extraordinary impactful in helping me carve my path for the future, and I am very appreciative for their support” says Holloway. Between his two internships, Holloway undoubtedly absorbed BDO’s culture and already embodies BDO’s mission of helping people thrive. Recently, he volunteered by helping with tax returns for low-income families in his community and plans to teach financial literacy to low-income individuals. “I want to do more community service, give back and support the students in public high schools from my area,” he shares. In the next few years, Holloway hopes to join BDO in either Tax or Assurance and wants to become more involved in Greater Washington D.C.’s BDO Counts program.

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Additional Comments from Darlene:

Curtis shared with me that he has already received a full-time job offer with BDO as an Audit Associate!   I have enjoyed working with him throughout the years and I am so excited about his progress.  Curtis was previously featured on my Blog.  I highlighted his success as the former President of NABA(http://wp.vcu.edu/dwardcareer/2017/03/21/naba-means-success/) and again in 2014 when he was a sophomore just beginning to receive internships. (http://wp.vcu.edu/dwardcareer/2014/11/10/curtis-holloway-is-a-student-who-jumped-in-right-away-and-became-impressive/)

If you ever need an example of a student that has done it all very well, please see his story.  Curtis Holloway is one of the most professional students in the School of Business!

Internship Success for Amer Awad at ALDI!

Amer Awad has a summer internship at ALDI. Amer is a business foundations/MGT who will graduate in May 2018.  He met the ALDI reps at our spring Career Fair and started the connection. After four interviews, he got the news that he landed the internship!

After looking at his resume, it is plain to see why he was a great choice for the internship.  Amer already has three years of retail experience (at the Associate level) under his belt and a very strong GPA.

Congratulations to you Amer and best of luck in your summer internship!

Internship Success for Daniela Quiroga Rodriguez!

I have only posted one or two fall internships and I am happy to say that one of our own has already landed a position!   Daniela will be working at The Institute for Contemporary Art (ICA) at VCU providing a wide range of database, research, administrative, and general support to the ICA’s development team. 

She found the opportunity on my Blog and she wrote me a very sweet email message, “Thank you for all the energy you put into making students successful. This is the very first, real step in my career and I could not have achieved it without your continued support to the School of Business.”

I am so happy that she moved very quickly to apply for the role and I think the experience will look amazing on her resume.  Congratulations Daniela!!

Daniela Quiroga Rodriguez (May 2019) is a Junior Info Systems student who is also pursuingan undergraduate certificate in Product Innovation.  She has an impressive resume with a strong GPA and leadership experience from participating in the STEM Ambassador program, a teaching assistant position with the VCU Focused Inquiry Department, and her membership in the Association of Information Technology Professionals.

 

Internship & Leadership Success for Accounting Student, Keith Willett!

Keith Willett, Accounting Major, August, 2018

“I started going to career services during my first semester(spring ’16) at VCU. I recently separated from the United States Navy and I was interested in an internship in accounting.  After my spring semester, I started meeting with Darlene.  I would literally show up every week with questions to get ready for fall recruiting season.  One thing I started doing was creating cover letters for accounting firms I was interested in before they were posted on HireVCURams.  I started networking with multiple recruiters during numerous Beta Alpha Psi events and used the Ram to Ram program to reach out to numerous alumni in different areas of accounting.  I received two great internships this year, one as a Spring Tax Intern with Dixon Hughes Goodman, LLP and a Summer Audit Intern with Myers and Stauffer, LC.  I can’t STRESS how important it is to start early with your resume, preparing answers for interview questions (using the STAR method) and educating yourself with the firms in the Virginia area.  Darlene has a great timeline sheet that you can use to gauge where you need to be in the process of the summer onward to Meet the Accounting Firms (hosted by Beta Alpha Psi) in the fall.  Without the combination of the School of Business Career Services and Beta Alpha Psi, I highly doubt I would have the success I have had.  Once again, I really can’t stress how important it is to start talking to Darlene and her staff at Career Services now.  You will be less stressed once Fall recruiting season comes because you will be ahead of everybody else.

Beta Alpha Psi is a great organization that has brought me to new heights. We were able to go to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for our regional conference and I will be going to Anaheim, California this summer for our National Conference.  We have great networking events throughout the semester.

I am the President of Beta Alpha Psi and we have many great things planned out for next year.  If you would like to join or have any questions please feel free to contact me at (willettkj@vcu.edu).”

 

Internship Success: Congratulations to Brittany Amefu, Target Executive Intern!

This is the time of year that students have found out that they have landed an internship.  Be on the lookout for posts to celebrate internship success.  The first one to share is from Brittany Amefu:

“This summer I’ll be completing an internship with Target as an Executive Intern! (I know there are three other VCU students completing the program as well). We start June 5 and end sometime in August. The majority of us found the internship through the career fair that happened several weeks ago in the Atriums and completed two rounds of interviews before being offered the position in early March. We have been assigned a mentor who is a current store leader and will be shadowing them during the course of the summer to learn the various store operations and what their jobs entail. I’m super excited for this opportunity and I can’t wait to see all that I will learn.”
Brittany Amefu:  Dual Degree in Management & Marketing
Strong GPA and leadership experience from organizations such as Sigma Sigma Sigma and Admissions Ambassadors.
Graduation:  Dec. 2017

Amazing Full-time Job Success For Brianna Earl at Altria!

   2017 picture of Bree in Snead Hall

We are certainly proud of our business students!  Brianna “Bree” (Human Resources major) will be graduating in May 2017.  She has been a joy to work with over the years.  I would describe her as extremely talented leader and a go-getter.  I featured Bree in June 2015 when she landed her internship at Estes and I am thrilled that she will be walking into a full-time HR position with Altria.  Her internships, her strong GPA, and her leadership roles in SHRM (president) and in Alpha Kappa Psi made her an obvious choice for one of Richmond’s largest employers!  Congratulations!!!

In her own words:

“I began going to Career Services when I was a freshman. The guidance that I received was amazing from the start. I volunteered for the career fair and was able to connect with multiple employers before even being able to apply for the internships that were available . One employer I connected with was Altria. I was determined to work for Altria but wanted to get as much experience as possible. I continued to keep in contact with career services and landed a HR Internship at ValueOptions, summer of my freshman year. Summer of sophomore year, Career Services helped me find a wonderful opportunity at Estes Express Lines. I worked for Estes for 2 years while keeping in contact with Altria. Through networking and continuous hard work, I was able to land a full-time job with Altria as an Associate Compensation Analyst and will be starting after graduation in May.

Thank you so much Darlene and Career Services for your endless dedication to students in Snead. I am proud to be able to continue to give back to VCU after graduation. It’s never too early to start preparation for your career”.

Post From Back in the day (2015)

I am pleased to share this internship success for Brianna Earl, sophomore Business Administration major graduating in May 2017.   This Chesapeake native impressed me from the very start with her strategic job search goals and her willingness to get involved in leadership programs to grow her interpersonal skills.  Brianna, or Bree as she likes to be called, is the Director of Philanthropy in Alpha Kappa Psi, an active member in SHRM (will be the Treasurer for 2015-16) and a participant in the Ram to Ram mentoring program.  She starts a human resource internship this summer at Estes Express Lines.

Here are her words:

“I am pleased to announce that after a long interview season, I am now a HR Support Intern with Estes Express Lines. I am so thankful for the connections that the VCU Career Services has provided me with and how dedicated Darlene Ward was with helping me prepare for possibly interning this summer. From day one, I told her that my goal is to have an internship every summer until I graduate and I am happy to say that as a sophomore that I am on track.  Thank you for everything!”

 2015 Bree as a sophomore!

 

****If you have a success that you would like to share via the Blog, please email me at dward@vcu.edu and let me know.