After three internships with PricewaterhouseCoopers, Christen Elion was excited to accept an offer to join the Big Four firm as an assurance associate.
Her first internship focused on campus recruiting. “I learned a lot about the company and how to get a CPA license,” says Christen, an accounting major. During her second internship, she was part of the intern loan program and worked at Glidess club of Chicago, a cancer support center. Her last internship was in auditing, the area in which she’ll be working after graduation.
In addition to what she learned during her internship experiences, Christen feels well-prepared for her career thanks to the Business Opportunity Program (BOP) and her accounting coursework at Krannert.
“I think BOP prepared me in terms of how to develop a résumé, how to interview. This was prior to starting my freshman year in college, so getting that jump start early on was very helpful.”
Christen also credits Krannert professors, many with years of corporate experience, with giving her the analytic skills and insight needed for the job. Her favorite teacher was Patrick Johanns. “Everybody calls him Dr. J. He is really funny in a corny-dad kind of way. I would go visit him during office hours for help and he was always available.”
One of her favorite memories of Krannert is a canoeing trip at Turkey Run State Park she took with the Management Ambassadors, a group of students who give tours and answer questions from prospective students. “It was an overnight trip and some of the other ambassadors fell out of the canoe and it was really funny. It was a really good bonding experience. It wouldn’t have been one of my best memories if I had fallen out.”
Christen was the vice president of outreach for the Management Ambassadors and was also active in the Society of Minority Managers.
Although Christen says management accounting was a class that really opened her eyes to what the field was all about, another class comes to mind when talking about favorites. “I also took bowling, which is clearly not a Krannert class.”
Christen worked part-time her entire four years at Purdue in the Union Rack and Roll, a bowling alley in the basement of the Purdue Memorial Union. “I never tried it until last year. I’m always down there, I thought, ‘I really should take this class to know what I’m talking about.’ I got a lot better, too.”