THE ACCOUNTING INTERNSHIP: REASONS AND ADVICE
by Robert D. Fesler and Charles W. Caldwell
Employers now begin recruiting efforts well in advance of graduation. They use
Internships to establish early contact and gain extended exposure to students. Internship
offers frequently occur in the junior and sometimes, earlier years. The following quotes
are typical of what students say concerning their internship experiences:
Overall, it was an incredible experience and one I would not trade for anything in the
I learned more in three months than I ever thought possible.
Overall, I rate my internship as the best thing that has happened to me professionally.
I believe this (the internship) was the best thing I could have done for myself.
The growth and popularity of internships merit your attention. This article gives reasons
you should consider an internship, thoughts on preparing and planning for an internship,
and discussion on how to maximize the experience.
REASONS FOR INTERNING
An accounting internship offers benefits no other experience can rival. Discussion here
focuses on the prevalence of internships, validation of the accounting major and
accounting ability, experience and academic benefit, and selected other benefits.
Prevalence Of Internships.
Internships are common in many fields. Exhibit 1 discloses National Association of
Colleges and Employers (NACE) data collected for all disciplines. NACE works with
more than 1700 colleges and universities and more than 1600 employers nationwide.
Note that 66 percent of manufacturers have reported using internship programs and that
75 percent of governmental and non-profit organizations report sponsorship of an
internship program. A full 98 percent of employers surveyed used their intern programs
as a recruiting tool for full-time employees. Of new hires from the class of 98-99,
approximately 22 percent had previously served an internship with the organization that
hired them full-time. These statistic