Name: Kirsten Dionne
Major: Accounting and LSM in Health & Industry
Position: Accounting Intern
Company: Liberty Mutual
Can you describe your career path for me?
During high school I worked in a restaurant bussing tables and I worked really hard in school so that I could have the opportunity to attend a school like Bentley. I spent the summers going into my freshman, sophomore, and junior year waitressing at the same restaurant. This past summer I had the opportunity to intern at Liberty Mutual in Boston within their corporate accounting department. This was a great experience for me and I was able to learn a lot about accounting as well as what it is like to work in a corporate environment. After graduation, I am planning on earning my Master’s degree and eventually my CPA. I hope to work for a public accounting firm under the advisory function.
How did you become interested in this career?
Before coming to Bentley I did not know what aspect of business I wanted to study. It wasn’t until my sophomore year that I decided accounting was a good fit for me. I took CDI 201, it challenged me to really understand my strengths and weakness, and how they align with my career interests.
What aspects of your position do you find most rewarding?
During my internship with Liberty Mutual I was a member of the expense team. Even as an intern I was responsible for booking important entries every month along with the other members of my team. I found it to be really rewarding that the company and my team trusted me with these tasks and allowed me to feel like I was really contributing.
What aspects do you find most challenging?
I think what can be the most challenging as an accounting major is the coursework. The classes can be really tough and it is important to stay on top of them. Another thing that can be challenging is how competitive the application process typically is. Many students are competing for the same positions at the same companies which makes it hard to stand out sometimes.
What advice do you have for someone preparing to enter this career?
For any student choosing to major in accounting, I really encourage taking classes seriously and using our campus resources. Career Services is a huge resource that can truly help students navigate the application processes and appear professional to employers. I also recommend networking with professors and alumni as much as possible even if its just to learn about the different career paths within accounting.
Are there any Bentley specific courses or resources you would recommend to help someone pursue this career?
In terms of accounting, there is no specific course I recommend taking in order to prepare students for their careers. I think Bentley has a very rigorous accounting program that will set all students up for success. One thing I do recommend is getting involved on campus. Employers love seeing candidates who challenge themselves outside of the classroom and have the important soft skills.
Who is one person at Bentley that helped you get where you are today?
Kristine Vidic in Career Services spent a lot of time with me as a freshman and sophomore trying to figure out the best career path for me. If it wasn’t for her I would not have decided on accounting and gotten to where I am today.