Baylor Accounting Career & Professional DevelopmentNov. 16, 2020
By Daniel Shallcross
The accounting career management process for new Accounting majors started before students attended a single upper-level accounting class in Waco. Baylor University's Accounting & Business Law Department hosted two separate networking lunches in Dallas and Houston with new accounting students, business professionals and accounting faculty the week prior to the fall semester. This allowed professionals in these areas to attend without traveling to Waco and enabled students to begin the transition into the major before considering class requirements.
Once the fall semester kicked-off at Baylor, the career and professional development activities also ramped-up. Fall offerings included a resume workshop, Industry Accounting Night, Public Accounting Night, a CPA exam info session with Becker's Peter Olinto and pre-internship workshops. An event back by popular demand also made a reappearance: The Accounting Extravaganza. This activity, which required coordination between BAPsi and our department, was created to recruit pre-business students into the accounting major. Attendance was great, as 385 students visited with professionals from several organizations. The unique roles and careers of the participating professionals—attorney, HR recruiter, CFO, professor and credit analyst, just to name a few—made apparent the various career opportunities available for those with an accounting background. The reemergence of the event appeared successful based on the initial student feedback along with the year-over-year increase in the number of pre-business students selecting Accounting.
Due to the pandemic, the spring semester was anything but normal for accounting students and employers. However, the timing of the Accounting Firm Presentation Days and Accounting Career Day made it possible for companies and students to meet prior to a busy season of virtual internship interviews and recruiting activities. Direct comments submitted by students communicate the appreciation of the department and overall recruiting process even through a difficult time:
"Recruiting was a great experience even though it ended up being virtual in the spring. The events in the fall and the presentations and career day in the spring were a great opportunity to get to meet the firms and learn more about all of them."
"Thank you guys so much! Even with COVID it was all really good."
"You made the recruiting process fairly easy, definitely very ahead of accounting programs at other schools that I have heard about from friends."
"I really appreciate the way you guys help us through the job and internship process. Other majors kind of leave them on your own."
Kudos to our students and the hiring employers on the adaptability required during an unforeseen season. During the academic year, 95 percent of students—undergrad and advanced degrees—from our Accounting program communicated full-time employment prior to graduation. Majority of internship-seeking students participating in Spring Public Accounting recruiting landed a 2021 internship. The internship and full-time placements are a testament to the excellence of our students and the continued financial and non-financial support from our corporate partners. Words cannot express how grateful we are to have such an amazing group of companies ensuring the success of our program.