When planning a career event at a university, paying careful attention to the needs of visiting employers and of eager students leads to good results for everyone. That’s why the Ahead of the Game Accounting and Business Expo at Florida International University (FIU) this fall was such a success.
The expo was hosted by two student accounting organizations in the College of Business Administration that used to have separate career events: Beta Alpha Psi, the international accounting honor society, and ALPFA at FIU, an organization for accounting, finance and business-related majors.
“Because so many of the accounting firms attended each, it was a better idea to combine these into one expo,” said Gabe Mendoza, president-elect of Beta Alpha Psi. “We don’t want to overuse our resources. Plus a combination event respects the time of the employers and the students.”
Thirty-five companies and 275 students participated in the on-campus expo, according to Catherine M. Pena, president-elect of ALPFA at FIU. Introductions were made, résumés were distributed and conversations ensued as students learned more about the accounting firms and vice versa. Part way through the four-hour event, employers had the opportunity to request that selected students make a second visit to their company table.
“It was an excellent opportunity for accounting, finance and MIS students in the business school,” Pena said. “We were very pleased with the feedback we received from employers and students.”
Dawn Lazar (MS ’06), assistant director of accounting services in Career Management Services, had high praise for Mendoza, Pena and other organizers.
“This was a superbly run event, very well thought through,” Lazar said. “The students benefited from learning to plan such a large-scale program and from the networking opportunities they had.”
Another Ahead of the Game Accounting and Business Expo will take place January 28, 2011, from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m.
Student organizations give undergrads distinct advantages.
It was Mendoza who coined the name for the expo.
“Attending this event is a smart, proactive move, of course,” he said. “But the expo’s name also reflects that by being members of our organizations, students are ahead of the career game.”
Ahead of the Game Accounting and Business Expo Sponsors
Bank of America
Becker Professional Education
Alvarez & Marsal
Berkowitz Dick Pollack & Brant
CBIZ Goldstein Lewin
Cherry Bekaert & Holland
Ernst & Young
From Wall St. to Main St.
Goldstein Schechter Koch
HACU (Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities)
Johnson & Johnson
JP Morgan Chase
Kane & Co.
McGladrey & Pullen
Ocariz, Gitlin, & Zomerfeld
US Department of Agriculture
US Census Bureau