Careers Blog

The Importance of an Internship

Stephanie Atkins - Herbein Intern

The Importance of an Internship

Throughout college I’ve been asked, “What are you going to school for?” more times that I can begin to count. However, whenever I answered that question with ‘accounting’ that really wasn’t the end of the answer.

Going to college and getting a degree in accounting is only the beginning. As I approached my senior year of college, I had a very important decision to make. Do I want to be in private or public accounting, and if I want to go public, would I rather be doing taxes or audits? I always knew this issue would come up at some point, but I always thought I would figure it out when the time came. However, time went by a lot quicker than I anticipated and I realized that I needed to figure out what I really wanted to do. When I got the opportunity to work in the tax department as an intern at Herbein + Co., I figured I would either love doing taxes or hate them, and then I would know if I wanted to be in the tax or audit department.

Before the internship started, I was convinced I would HATE taxes and never want to look at a tax return ever again because I really didn’t like my tax class at all. However, as time went on I actually enjoyed it and learned a lot of valuable information. Now that I knew I didn’t hate taxes, I couldn’t completely eliminate the tax department from my options. When I was offered an internship position in the accounting and audit department for this summer, I was thrilled because it was the perfect opportunity for me to experience something new and maybe get an idea of what I would want to do for the rest of my life. I have been interning in the audit department for a few weeks and I am really enjoying it so far. It is completely different than the tax department, but I like the client interaction and traveling that comes with auditing.

From my experiences with Herbein + Company, I know that I definitely want to stay with public accounting and now that I have accepted an offer for after I graduate, I know that I will be starting my career in the accounting and audit department. Until then, I will continue to learn as much as I can in as many areas as possible.

What I thought was miserable in school; I ended up really enjoying in a real life situation. I wish I would not have made judgments on a subject based on the classes/professors that I didn’t like in school.

If I could give advice to future college students/interns, I would highly recommend an internship because there is only so much a professor can teach you in a classroom with a book and PowerPoint. Being able to see how things are done in the real world makes you realized that the textbook can only teach so much. Something that seems boring and bland in the classroom can actually be a really fun and interesting task in the real world.