A little rain didn’t stop students from coming out to meet recruiters at the first ever “Big Four” Accounting Day, Sept. 6, 2012, at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business. The “Big Four” accounting firms — Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG, and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) — welcomed undergraduates and master’s students studying accounting . The students and recruiters mingled over a barbeque lunch under tents in the outdoor courtyard of Van Munching Hall.
It was the first time all four firms have collaborated to host students on the same day at the Smith School. Recruiters from all four firms were excited to talk with students and didn’t mind sharing the venue with three competitors, especially because students that attended were prepared to network and learn more about each firm.
“We’re having conversations with the students to get to know them and their personalities and who they are. We want them to get to know us,” said Ruba Elbasha, a PwC manager and recruiter for the firm. “What differentiates the Big Four is the people. We all do the same type of work. The advice I got when I was recruited was get to know the people and where you fit in the most. That’s what we look for – the fit.”
The Smith School’s Office of Career Services organized the event, which kicked off a busy season of recruiter events at the school. Firms frequently host activities, events and giveaways in Van Munching as they look to lure top students to internships and full-time positions.
Pasha Salami, ’14, attended the barbeque to network with recruiters from the Big Four firms. “I’m trying to get into federal auditing, so I’m just shopping myself around and checking out my opportunities. I’ve met a lot of really interesting people and had a lot of great conversations. This has helped a lot – I am a lot more focused. I can see it – where I’d like to end up.”
The Office of Career Services works with employers to coordinate student events and activities throughout the semester, such as “Employer of the Day” sponsorships to meet and greet students in the lobby of Van Munching Hall; classroom-setting information sessions and corporate presentations; and one-on-one meetings and on-campus interviews with students. There are dozens of events planned for the fall 2012 semester, including additional events hosted by each of the Big Four firms. The firms will be back on campus next week to take part in undergraduate Career Fair, Sept. 14 at Riggs Alumni Center.