Happy Interview Season!

It’s interview season here in the College of Business. COBA students are encouraged to participate in an internship while they’re studying here, so most juniors are on the hunt for that elusive perfect internship.

Kyndal Coleman, a junior accounting major from San Antonio, is right in the middle of this stressful process. However, she took a few minutes to give us the inside scoop on what it’s like in the world of accounting internship interviews.

Kyndal Coleman

Kyndal Coleman

1. Who have you interviewed with this semester?

“So far, I’ve interviewed with Whitley Penn, Weaver LLP, and PricewaterhouseCoopers. I’m also hoping for the chance to interview with Lane Gorman Trubitt, Hartman Leito & Bolt, Ernst & Young and KPMG as they come to campus in the next few weeks.”

2. How did you connect with the companies you interviewed with?

“Prior to the application process, firms host recruiting events and visit ACU’s campus to speak to organizations like the Student Accounting Organization. This is a great chance to see what each firm offers and where you might be interested in applying. All of the firms I am interviewing with utilize CareerLink for their recruiting process. They post internship availibilities online and allow you to apply via the CareerLink website. From there, you can further connect by attending the pre-interview dinners in the Spring. These events are a wonderful way to get to know the people working at the firm in a relaxed atmosphere before interviews actually begin.”

3. What were you most nervous about going into the interviews?

“The “unknown”: not knowing exactly who you’ll be interviewing with or exactly what questions they’ll ask is a scary thought. While I can’t predict exactly what will happen in each interview, proper preparation definitely helps build confidence and calm nerves.”

4. How did COBA prepare you for these interviews?

“My Career Center mock interview was a very informative way to learn about proper answering techniques, attire, body language, and other helpful tips that could only be learned through seasoned professionals who are willing to give constructive criticism.
Additionally, CareerLink has been an invaluable tool in applying for and scheduling my interviews. I know there is such hard work behind the scenes that goes into getting such a wide range of employers on our campus, and this website simplifies and streamlines the entire process beautifully for students.”

5. What advice would you give someone who’s going into an interview for the first time?

  • “Don’t be afraid to ask questions ahead of time and during the entire interview process!
  • Ahead of time: Seek out the relationships of upperclassmen and faculty in COBA who have “been there done that.” It’s great to get advice and insight from people who have successfully made it through the interview process themselves.
  • When you meet the employer: If you’re curious about an aspect of the job you’re applying for, don’t hesitate to ask about it during the interview. Questions show that you’re engaged in the process, and allow for you to better determine where you’ll best fit in.”

Good luck to all of our students who are currently in the interview process!

COBA Continues to Produce Exceptional Undergraduate Research

The College of Business at ACU is committed to involving students in undergraduate research, something that sets us apart from many of our larger competitors. While participating in undergraduate research gives students a hands-on opportunity to conduct research, it also provides students with the chance to be mentored by a memeber of our faculty and to learn from them in a one-on-one setting.

Ashley Truong, a junior marketing major, has had the opportunity to work with Dr. Malcolm Coco on research concerning internships. Ashley describes this project’s focus, saying,

“Our research paper, ‘Content Analysis of Student and Company Reactions to a University Internship Program,’ is about the purpose of internships, the advantages and disadvantages of internships, host companies, student likes and dislikes about internships, and suggestions for host companies and students.”

For the past several years, Dr. Coco has surveyed all COBA interns and their host companies at the conclusion of each internship. Through this survey, Dr. Coco has collected data on suggestions that host companies have for their interns and vice versa, as well as likes and dislikes that each party had about the internship. Because this study has spanned multiple years, Dr. Coco has been able to compile a list of recommendations for both interns and host companies that should help internships flow smoothly.

Dr. Malcolm Coco

“At the start of each internship program, I provide the students and host companies a master list of the data collected over the past 10 years,” Dr. Coco elaborated. “This information will hopefully tell the interns and host company representatives what will make their internship experience more meaningful.  In other words, to do the things that work and avoid the things that don’t.”

In addition to the external benefits of Dr. Coco’s research results, the actual research process has numerous benefits for students like Ashley, an aspect of the project that Dr. Coco believes is important.

“It is fun to do research with undergrads.  It hopefully encourages them to think about masters and maybe doctoral work and of course increases their knowledge about the subject being researched,” he said.

Ashley has enjoyed working on this project, although she has discovered that learning how to find research can be challenging. In spite of the challenges, she feels that the project has taught her a lot, in addition to being very rewarding.

“This has not only been a huge blessing, but it has also been a great learning experience,” she explained. “I have been able to work directly with Dr. Coco on this research project, and project has also allowed me to use what I have learned and apply it to my current classes, especially Marketing Research…I think everyone should find a mentor and friend during college and beyond.”

Congratulations to Ashley Truong and Dr. Malcolm Coco on their acceptance to the ACU Undergraduate Research Festival and to the International Academy of Business and Public Administration Disciplines Conference in Dallas!