On September 16, 2015, the IUP Eberly
College of Business and Information Technology’s Student Accounting Association (SAA), in
collaboration with the IUP Career and Professional Development Center, held
their annual Accounting Career Day at the Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex.
The event attracted a record number of
organizations recruiting at the event—32 in total. Represented companies included the “Big Four”
accounting firms, 13 regional and local public accounting firms, three banks, three
government agencies, three MBA programs, two accounting professional associations, a
CPA review company, an accounting executive search firm, a relocation company,
and a large health services company.
SAA is one of only a few student organizations on campus that hosts its own
The Accounting Career Fair was organized
into three segments: a two-hour morning
session, a 90-minute buffet-style lunch, and a two-hour afternoon session. The
morning session was exclusive to IUP students, while the afternoon session was
open to both IUP students and accounting students from surrounding universities.
IUP students arrived at 9:30 a.m. to welcome
accounting professionals and recruiters. The SAA prepared a “resume book” for
the recruiters which included over 90 IUP accounting majors’ resumes. Students were able to talk directly with
recruiters about various opportunities, including summer leadership programs,
internships, and positions for permanent employment.
Jeannine Goncher, Human Resources officer at 1st Summit
Bank, was extremely impressed with the SAA’s Accounting Career Day. “The students
were respectful and very well prepared, the venue was perfect, and I especially
enjoyed the lunch discussions with faculty and students,” Goncher said. “Also, I
loved the booklet of student resumes. It was the first time I’ve seen that
done; it was sheer genius and a great time-saver for employers to review
resumes in advance.”
SAA member Ryan Sweeney began the lunch
with a brief welcome followed by SAA member Lindsey Hochendoner, who thanked faculty
members of the Accounting Department and administration for all the hard work
and dedication they put forth for their students. Brad Deppen, SAA Career Day
cochair, introduced Matt McCullough, a 2015 IUP graduate, as the keynote
speaker for the event. McCullough is currently an associate with the Pittsburgh
regional public accounting firm, Sisterson & Associates.
McCullough opened his speech by
indicating how nice it was to be back at his alma mater. The story he chose to
share was about his transition and development during his college career. “As a freshman, I was sitting in the back of
the class doing the bare minimum and discovering the truth behind the ‘freshman
15,’” said McCullough. However, he later found
an interest in accounting and realized how important it was to get
involved. He focused on stepping out of
his comfort zone and seeking leadership roles, which he demonstrated by becoming
president of Phi Gamma Nu, a professional business fraternity, and vice president
of finance for SAA. Matt excelled in school, and his hard work paid off as he
was hired to work for Sisterson & Associates.
The SAA recognized the efforts of Jan
Shellenbarger of IUP’s Career and Professional Development Center,
and Kim Anderson, the SAA faculty advisor, for their help in organizing the
event. Shellenbarger and Anderson worked
closely with SAA vice president Corrine Camp and SAA Career Day
cochairs Dan Ryan and Brad Deppen to make this year’s Accounting Career Day
one of the best ever.
“Throughout the day, recruiters
mentioned to me how impressed they were with our students,” Anderson said when
asked how she thought the event turned out. “In particular, several of them
remarked on how well prepared our students were as compared to students at
similar events held at other universities. I was very proud!”
In the photo at left, Kimberley Miller ’02 (left) is a tax manager with Sisterson & Co., Kim Anderson (center) is an accounting professor at IUP, and Matthew McCullough ’15 (right) is an
associate with Sisterson & Co.