Q) What is a Junior Year Winter Internship?
A Winter Internship is a competitive, 10-week paid internship at a public accounting firm or business during the spring semester of your junior year. For January, February, and the first week or two of March, selected interns work alongside regular CPA staff members during the heart of the busy season. Firms and businesss where students have interned include: PwC, KPMG, EY, Deloitte, CliftonLarsonAllen, RSM, BDO, BKD, State Farm, Caterpillar and several others. A Winter Internship is an incredible learning opportunity and can often lead to a full-time job offer at the end of the program.
Q) Do you have to take classes after the Winter Internship is over?
Yes, once the internship is over, students return to campus for the second half of the semester. During this time you will take two accounting classes at an intensive pace (three hours a day, five days a week).
Q) When do you start interviewing for the Winter Internship?
Interviewing usually occurs during Spring Semester of your sophomore year, so planning ahead is essential! However, some firms come to campus the beginning of Fall Semester, junior year. Interviews with these companies are usually scheduled very close together. It can get very overwhelming, but it's important to stay calm and BE YOURSELF!
Q) What kind of questions do firms ask?
Interviewing with accounting firms and businesses is primarily Behavior Based. Behavior-based interviewing is developed on the idea that past performance predicts future action. In these questions, recruiters are trying to determine if you have the skills they need in the position. They are looking for complete answers with the situations, task, action, and result that you took given. A common example of a behavior based question is: "Give me an example of a time when you served in a leadership role and some member of the team was not handling his or her responsibilities. How did you address this situation?" Recruiters also expect you to know about their organization, so researching companies is an important part of your interview preparation as well.
Q) Where do I go to help prepare myself for interviews?
The Hart Career Center on campus has a great staff that can aid you in not only building an eye-catching resume but also give you tips on how to act, prepare and develop great skills for the interview itself. The Career Center also uses an excellent online system called Handshake. This is where you upload your resume and apply for interviews. This is also where you can sign up for practice interviews, which allow you an opportunity to get comfortable in an interview setting and receive feedback on your performance. The Career Center also has a virtual practice interview room called 'Big Interview' that you can access online. For more information on how the Career Center can help you, visit their office on the 2nd floor of the Minor Myers, jr. Welcome Center or go to their website at www.iwu.edu/career-center/.
Q) How do I know which organization is best for me?
The only way to really tell if a firm or business is right for you is to research the company and go to as many functions that involve the company as you can. For example, some firms hold optional informational sessions on campus to give students an idea of what their company does and how they work. These functions are a way to network with the representatives from that firm and to learn what that firm has to offer you. Another good source is to attend job fairs and talk with students and alumni who have interned or worked with the organization after graduation.