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Accounting Career Exploration Trip to NYC Gives Students In-Person Perspective, Opportunity to Interact With Dozens of Whitman Alumni

Students in New York City visiting companies.


Grace Sepe ’26 calls herself a “visual person,” so walking through the offices and networking with employees of the top accounting firms in New York City helped her envision what kind of career she might have after she completes her degree in accounting at the Whitman School.

 

“It was so great to be there in person and to step out of the classroom setting to see what it’s really like to work at these firms.  You could tell how each firm did similar work but had its own unique workplace culture,” she says. “And, I liked the experience of finding my way around New York City. This Accounting Career Exploration Trip gave me the sense that I could really work here one day.”

 

Whitman’s annual Accounting Career Exploration Trip took place in May, as 23 rising sophomores and juniors met Emily Shaughnessy, an assistant director for the Whitman Career Center; Olivia Smith, undergraduate career advisor; and Professor of Accounting Practice Maryann Monforte, in New York City for a four-day excursion to visit a number of accounting firms, including the Big 4. They also had the chance to interact with Whitman alumni working in the field in more informal settings, while also enjoying some of the highlights of the city.

 

This is the third year that Whitman has hosted the Accounting Exploration Trip in person. (In 2021, the trip was held virtually due to the pandemic.) According to Shaughnessy, attendance on the trip has continued to grow, and it is not exclusive to accounting majors but also welcomes students who are considering the field.

 

“The recruitment cycle for these firms starts very early, so it is important that we get our students thinking about their options as soon as possible,” says Shaughnessy. “Each firm showed them around, had some networking opportunities and also some kind of activity that represented the type of work they do. At EisnerAmper, for example, they did a fun group challenge using Legos to show students ways of relaying information. At KPMG, they talked to the students about AI and how they’re leveraging it within the field.”

In addition, Whitman held a networking breakfast at the University’s Fisher Center with professionals who have left public accounting and gone into corporate settings in order to show students their options and the depth and breadth of having a foundation in accounting. Other events included dinner at the popular Italian restaurant Carmine’s and a New York Yankees game with members of the Whitman Lubin School of Accounting Alumni Council .

 

“I really liked meeting with a lot of Whitman alumni in a more informal setting. Almost all of the people at the various firms went to Syracuse University, so we had shared experiences — and almost everyone seemed to know Professor Monforte and said they were in the accounting field because of her,” says Will Holloway ’27. “I’m from Minnesota, and this was the first time I’ve been in New York City, so I really took advantage of everything that was offered on this trip. It didn’t feel like school, and I appreciate everyone who took the time to put this together for us. I already have meetings set up to continue to talk with two alumni I sat with at a Yankees game, which is exciting.”

 

According to Shaughnessy, the trip was a success, and she is grateful to the more than 50 alumni from the New York City area who participated at both the firms and in other activities.

 

“Our students learned so much by actually seeing the places they might work one day and talking to people who had once been at Whitman and are now finding success in the accounting field. And, the firms were so generous with their time while hosting us,” Shaughnessy says. “There are accounting jobs out there, and it is my hope that our students will keep the lines of communication open to the connections they made on this trip and take advantage of the opportunities that are available to them.”

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  • Alumni
  • Corporate Partners
  • Faculty
  • Stories

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