When the last of her five children went to college, so did senior accounting student Lorrie Hopper. Formerly a full time employee in manufacturing, Hopper decided she needed to find a new occupation that was less physically challenging.
Midway through her junior year, Hopper earned an internship at Crowe Horwath by networking through the Leighton School Accounting Association. “I introduced myself to the Crowe Horwath representative,” she said. “I was invited to come back for an interview.” After interviewing for several other internship opportunities, Hopper received an offer from Crowe Horwath.
Hopper was excited to secure an internship in the tax department, but she was also a bit anxious about the job itself. “I expected it to be a high pressure work environment,” she said. “Instead it was a relaxed, supportive environment. Crowe Horwath takes good care of their interns.”
Working 65 hours a week during the busy tax season between January and April, Hopper gained experience preparing individual and gift and estate taxes. “Just a few people in the department know how to prepare gift and estate tax returns,” said Hopper. “It’s much harder than corporate tax. I liked the challenge.”
As the internship progressed, other interns were asking Hopper the questions. “I felt like I belonged there,” she said. “I was teaching other interns.” Crowe Horwath thought so too! Hopper will begin working full-time in Crowe Horwath’s tax department in January, after she graduates from the Leighton School with her accounting degree.
“If you want to work in accounting, you need to do an internship,” she said. In addition to getting a foot in the door, it also helps students determine what they like to do in the field of accounting. For Hopper, it was tax, but for others it may be auditing. “It was a good way to get my foot in the door, but it also was a good way to determine if tax was something I wanted to do.”
As she prepares to graduate in December, Hopper hopes other Leighton School accounting majors will pursue internship experiences. “As early as sophomore year, students should begin attending Accounting Association meetings to network and stay on top of internship opportunities.” It led to Hopper’s dream job.