Although I am only a sophomore, my internship experiences have been extremely eye opening.
As I was nearing the end of my freshman year, I began to contemplate my plans for the summer as well as for my future as a whole. Immediately, I knew that I wanted an internship so I could experience all that the field of accounting had to offer. Most of my familiarity with accounting prior to that point had been learned in the classroom, so I wanted to get a first hand feel of what my professional career would look like. After attending Adelphi’s Job and Internship Expo, I got a call from a representative of Nassau County’s Internship Program. He offered me a position in which I would audit government-funded companies on behalf of the Department of Human Services. For the whole summer I was able to work in the field, network, and practice my accounting skills, all while learning a variety of new skills.
Through conducting these audits, I was able to grow personally and professionally. This experience taught me how to work individually outside the office and how to report my findings to a wide range of professionals. The trust that was bestowed upon me provided me with the opportunity to fine tune my communication skills and taught me how to be a confident accountant. Due to this internship, my interest in auditing was sparked; I thoroughly enjoyed meeting new people, spending time in new environments, and understanding the operations behind successful organizations. This internship allowed me to fully experience an aspect of accounting that my future could lead to.
Since my internship with Nassau County’s Department of Human Services was so valuable, I decided to make an appointment with Neil Halloran, Coordinator of Internships, about half way through the fall semester of my sophomore year. At that point my goal was to start arranging an internship for the summer, but to my surprise Professor Halloran offered to send my resume to Merrill Lynch. They were seeking an intern who could start immediately, and work alongside financial advisers as well as the operations management team. Regardless of the work that I would be performing, I knew that I could learn a lot from such a highly acclaimed company.
After joining the team at Merrill, I was included in numerous projects right away. From planning office-wide events to managing client accounts, I was able to learn so much. Undoubtedly the most beneficial part of this internship was being able to experience so many different parts of this company. Through working with many people on an array of projects, each person I worked with has provided me with unique advice for the future. Even in the most basic sense, Merrill taught me how to be a courteous professional in a shared work space.
While at Merrill, I was able to fully understand the appreciation that clients have for their financial advisers. In some cases, people didn’t know how to manage their money properly, and in other cases, clients wanted to know how to make their money last through retirement. The professionals that I worked with demonstrated how to accommodate the needs of individual clients, as well as comfort them while dealing with their most precious asset. Due to my involvement at Merrill Lynch, I was also able to fully understand the role that every single person holds within a team. If one member fails to work towards a predetermined goal, the team must reevaluate their individual responsibilities. My experience at Merrill Lynch was unlike any other, and I am so fortunate to have had the opportunity to intern there.
Although I am only a sophomore, my internship experiences have been extremely eye opening. Through these opportunities, I have been able to better understand the professional world that I will soon enter into, and have focused-in on the path that I want to follow. With at least two years of college ahead of me, I can only hope that my future internships are as beneficial as the ones I’ve already experienced.
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