cumulus-road-montana_26432_600x450Attention all accounting and finance college students! Have any of you heard of fall recruitment? If you're a freshman or sophomore, it's highly likely that the word "recruiting" sparks an all too familiar image in your mind. For many of us, we picture a group of professional athletes competing to be a part of a fantastic team amongst a group of coaches fighting for the most talented players.

Although recruitment in the accounting world has little to do with sports, the analogy seems to fit that you are the player, and the recruiters are the coaches. This game can be extremely exciting, rewarding, but also filled with its challenges. My advice, is to be one step ahead of the game.

As a freshman it can be difficult to narrow down what you're passionate about; so take some time to do informational interviews over the phone (a meeting in which a potential job seeker seeks advice on their career, the industry, and theĀ corporate culture of a potential future workplace), and job shadowing ( Once sophomore year hits, and you're sure of your interest in accounting, talk to your professors about attending "meet the firm" events to get the ball rolling. And don't be afraid to participate in any other university hosted events that present opportunities for you to meet staff and recruiters from various firms.

My recruiting journey began my sophomore year when I was invited by one of my accounting professors to a "meet the firm" event. The first firm I met was Delap LLP, and I was surprised to hear that I could apply for an internship as a sophomore. Matthew Hilton, the recruiter at Delap, was very encouraging so I decided to take a shot at it. After filling out an application, I was called back for the first round of interviews located on campus. I was nervous going into the interview, but once I got into the room I felt completely at ease because I was given the chance to be myself and to share my goals for the future. At the end of the interview Matthew left me with a very encouraging statement, "the sky is the limit". Take his advice!

When paired with passion, determination and hard work the sky really is the limit! After getting to meet some of the staff at the OSCPA Showcase, I got a real sense of Delap's INVEST culture. To the Delap team, this means serving clients, staff, and the community with Integrity, No Boundaries, Vision, Excellence with Passion, Staying Balanced, and Teamwork.

After two months of staying in touch I received a surprise call from Matthew, and was invited to tour the Delap office. While I was excited to see the firm and meet some of the team, what I didn't know at the time, was that Matthew was about to hand me an offer letter to be a summer intern! This was an awesome surprise and I couldn't believe that this is actually happening.

Currently I'm in my first week of interning at Delap, and I couldn't be more excited to be here. I look forward to being exposed to both tax, and audit. I'll even get a chance to get involved in some of the firm's marketing initiatives.

Having an opportunity to do an internship is something you don't want to pass up so I recommend that you put on your game face this fall and give it your best shot!

Delap LLP is one of Portlandā€™s largest local tax, audit, and consulting accounting firms, located in Lake Oswego, Oregon.