Internship Spotlight – Sydney Roman, CohnReznick

Eller PDC Coordinator Student Stories

Sydney Roman is an Accounting major who will graduate in May of 2019.  She interned this summer for CohnReznick as the Tax Intern in Los Angeles, California.

How did you get this internship?  I was looking at different firms in the LA area and came across the Summer leadership program for CohnReznick and reached out to the campus recruiter. I submitted my resume and had an over the phone interview where I was invited to participate in the 2 day internship. I was impressive enough to land one of the internship spots in the tax department of the LA office.

What was a typical day like? I would help wherever I was needed. Most days consisted of data entry for Single Member LLC returns for real estate clients, 1040 returns for individuals, working with the SALT team on special projects, and attending seminars in order to learn more about the different industries tax rules and regulations.

What was your favorite part of the experience? My favorite part of the experience was the people. The firm culture fits me well and I never felt out of place. From day one I felt welcomed and like I was a part of the firms family.

If you worked on a big project, please describe it below: I worked on a few large projects while I was there. One project was scanning in prior year returns for a client we had just acquired whose previous tax preparer kept all the record in paper. It was definitely what you would think of when you think of intern work, but it allowed me to see another way to organize work papers and documents after the return process was complete. And another project I worked on was for a SALT client who had acquired a business that had several outstanding taxes due for about the past 10 years. I had to go through each of the scanned documents and input the data from them and then compare the Income and Franchise taxes to the payments for the corresponding year to see if they were paid or outstanding.

What did you find most challenging about your internship? I found the downtime the most challenging. Tax has two busy seasons a year and my internship was during the summer when there is downtime between the two. Most employees were on vacation and at points there wasn’t even work for the associates to do. I had to go around and constantly ask people for work but there never seemed to be enough.

What advice do you have for other students looking for a similar internship? Don’t try to work somewhere you don’t fit. It’s okay if you don’t go into one of the Big 4 firms. At the end of the day what matters is that you enjoy working with the people around you because you will spend more time with them than anyone else.

How did Eller prepare you for your internship? Eller helped me become more comfortable with talking to new people and working on teams wit people I had never met before. The first semester group really helped me to better adapt to other peoples working styles and become more flexible to help create an effective and efficient dynamic.

Did your internship employer provide housing or transportation assistance? My employer provided transportation or financially supplemented my transportation during the internship.