- Submitted photo.
Sometimes you don’t really know what you want to do after school. Sometimes you don’t even know after you pick a major. Sometimes you just need to get in and try something.
That is exactly what Samantha Chavez ‘13 did. She has spent the past year interning at Jockey International in Kenosha through the Smeds Summer Internship Program, a program that allows Carthage students to apply their coursework in real-world settings and enables companies and organizations to employ students while evaluating them as potential employees.
“Working at Jockey has been an awesome experience,” Samantha said. “I wasn’t really sure about what I wanted my focus to be, and through my internship, I completely fell in love in with auditing. I’ve been able to work on real audits and find real problems and come up with real solutions. I’m not just making copies and getting coffee. I’m actually performing the work we talked about in class.”
She works in the Internal Auditing Department and has had the chance to perform 25 full audits of retail locations and discuss her findings with store and area retail managers. The Internal Auditing Department ensures that the organization is running efficiently and helps to minimize risk management.
Jockey threw Samantha into the fray right away. “I did my first full audit on my third day and had to share results of my audits with store managers,” she said. “Sometimes they weren’t happy to get results from an intern, but it taught me to maintain composure when someone says you’re wrong.”
Samantha also had the opportunity to audit travel and expense accounts as well. “I really enjoyed doing that,” she said. “I felt like a detective.”
The internship has given Samantha excellent experience. At the end of this year, she will have been with the company for two years. She hopes to use her education at Carthage and time at Jockey to earn her CPA and enter either the assurance or auditing field.
“I loved Business Law for Accountants. I’ve been interested in law since high school, so the class really combined two of my passions. We discussed current cases and had the opportunity for debate with our peers.”
“My toughest class was definitely Heritage. I did not enjoy the required readings and had a difficult time getting into the spirit of the debates, especially when it came to the philosophers like Plato. I like numbers, so putting together analytical papers about theories did not excite me.”
Favorite moments at Carthage
“The best times I’ve had at Carthage was whenever I was just enjoying myself with my friends. Whether that was at a CAB event, out around town, or just hanging our and doing homework in our rooms, it doesn’t really matter.”
Biggest surprise so far?
“I lived in the Best Western for a year and a half and it was absolutely fantastic. I had met my roommate only once, when we went on a trip for Model U.N. together. She became my best friend. Carthage has provided me so many opportunities to meet amazing people and I love feeling like a part of such a great community.”
Advice for other students considering your major
“Get to know the people in the department. Get to know your professors. They are there to help you and really want you to succeed. Get to know a few upperclassmen. We’re full of tips and tricks we wish we had known. Get to know your classmates because accounting isn’t a huge major, most of us become friends and when it’s 2 a.m. the night before a test and you still haven’t figured out the correct journal entry on a fund accounting problem, chances are they’re the only ones who are going to be willing and able to help.”