ZIPD Business Conference - October 10 to 11, 2013
"A Slice of Business Life"
It’s all about the connections we make in life.
For a partner in the major accounting firm, KPMG, and a Bloomsburg University student with her sights on an accounting career, the connection was twofold: a common major and a shared home state.
Mark Thomas ’91 first met Rebecca Lieberman ’13, from Randolph, N.J., when she “job shadowed” him as part of BU’s Sophomore Experiential Learning (SEL) program, spending time with clients in New York and South Jersey. With Thomas’ encouragement, she applied and interviewed for an eight-week internship and was accepted into the program for summer 2012.
As one of about 25 interns in the Short Hills, N.J., office – and the only intern from Bloomsburg University – Lieberman took advantage of opportunities to meet management, staff and other interns through professional experiences, community service, five networking events and as part of the KPMG softball league. She received an employment offer at the end of her internship and will begin her career with the firm in September 2013.
Thomas said Bloomsburg University students’ work ethic, along with the “good, solid accounting program,” makes them appealing to KPMG recruiters. Because of the university’s location, BU students usually find internships or employment in the firm’s Harrisburg and Philadelphia offices, he added.
Thomas said he looks forward to seeing Lieberman and meeting potential interns when he returns to campus as part of the second annual Zeigler Institute for Professional Development Business Conference Oct. 11 and 12. He will be one of about 50 alumni who will talk about their careers with students enrolled in BU’s College of Business.
During his presentation, Thomas will tell students what to expect in the field of public accounting. While the work offers variety and the opportunity to travel worldwide, he admits that the field isn’t for everyone. The knowledge they’ll gain during the first three to five years with KPMG, however, will provide a strong foundation for a career. “What you learn during the first couple of years, you can’t gain anywhere else,” he said.
Lieberman said her experiences with KPMG have been beneficial. During SEL, she learned 150 credits are required to sit for the certified public accountant (CPA) exam; she’ll have 153 when she graduates in May 2013. And, knowing a job awaits relieves stress from her senior year.
She also appreciates Thomas’ interest in her career.
“It’s comforting to know someone from Bloomsburg,” Lieberman said, “someone at the partner level.”