On Tuesday, September 26, 2017, Chatham University’s Business & Entrepreneurship Department hosted and sponsored an Accounting Panel Discussion and Networking Mixer. The mixer was well attended and held in the Buhl Hall’s Kresge Atrium. Mary Richter, a shareholder at Schneider Downs and B&E Dept Advisory Board Member, Celeste Suchko, a Tax Partner at BDO USA LLP, Amanda Johns, a Tax Associate at Sisterson & Co. and MAcc Alumna, and Gabrielle Bunting, a Senior Internal Auditor at BNY Mellon and MAcc Alumna led the panel.
Corey Doeing (B.A. Marketing ’20) explained some of the most useful aspects of the mixer on his career. “The point made most prevalent by all the panelists was being well-rounded. Accounting, just like many other fields, does not consist of one sole duty. Being able to apply various knowledge bases to your work is what makes you excel and stand out in any job.” The mixer focused specifically on “the need for a clear, individualized approach when talking with clients and understanding their needs can be crucial, especially in the financial and accounting industries.” Dr. James Pierson, Assistant Professor and Coordinator of Accounting, moderated the discussion on becoming an accounting professional.
I learned an important lesson from Mary Richter: “If you treat everyone as a future client/employer you will always respect everyone. Making healthy and positive connections will always help you in the long-run no matter who it is.” – Elayna Burdelski, B.A. Accounting ’20
Being able to showcase MAcc alumnae on the panel was also an important aspect of the event. The B&E Department works hard to maintain good relationships with graduates, which highlights to current graduate and undergraduate students future employment opportunities. Moreover, it provides students proof that their hard work will pay off upon graduation.
The most important lesson I learned from attending this event is that education is really key. Each panelist had to go out there and get an education before they could begin the climb to get where they are today. – Maya Goldstein, B.A. International Business ’21
Corey shared, as a final thought, “I truly appreciated the panelists’ candidness. None of them sugarcoated their experiences in obtaining the positions they have worked for. It may take time to find the right area of study or you may spend extra hours at work during certain times of the year, but as long as you are satisfied with your job, the struggle is well worth it.”
This Accounting Mixer is one of the many valuable networking and learning opportunities offered by the B&E Department to integrate each concentration into specialized, community-driven events. The department hosts regular events and workshops to promote learning opportunities for students, faculty and area professionals. This also provides students with insight into potential business careers and related industries in the Pittsburgh area.
Maura Rapkin is a first-year dual degree MBA/MAFS graduate student, with an interest in entrepreneurship and sustainable food production. She spent six years cooking in New York City catering companies, bakeries such as Breads Bakery, and fine dining restaurants including The Modern and Blue Hill at Stone Barns. Maura is grateful to join the innovative Chatham community, and be a part of the collective movement focused on growth and learning.