Caroline Polatin is an Accoutning major set to graduate in May 2020. This summer she interned for Arizona Auditor General as a Financial Audit Intern in Tucson, Arizona.
How did you get this internship?
I was able to obtain the internship through the Meet the Firms event for accounting majors back in the fall of 2018. After talking with the recruiter at the Arizona Auditor General table, I applied on their website and uploaded my resume and cover letter.
What was your favorite part of the experience?
My favorite part of the experience was the great environment that I worked in. Everyone supported each other and helped their colleagues’ growth and professional development. As an intern, I felt that I was given a real chance to to participate and bring my own thoughts and ideas to the table. Every step of the way, my colleagues would provide me feedback on how to grow in the areas that I was working in.
If you worked on a big project, please describe it below:
Working on auditing a county was a new, exciting, and challenging experience that I am extremely grateful I had the chance to help with! I was able to work on testing controls for payroll and non-payroll processes, interview auditees about their processes, travel to the audit sites to shadow the auditors in charge, and write up notes detailing the systems and controls in place.
What did you find most challenging about your internship?
I would say that the most challenging part of the internship was understanding how to audit for the first time and ask the right questions without interrupting the auditee or circumventing their explanations of the processes in place. Really being able to listen to the entire story, mapping the flow of the conversation while extracting the most critical aspects of the processes were all new experiences for me.
What advice do you have for other students looking for a similar internship?
I would tell other students looking for a similar internship to be open minded about the experience and accept that you won’t know everything at once. Additionally, be prepared that even if you understand a lot within the business classes at Eller, interning is a new experience that requires you to learn the work culture within the organization’s specific environment and the ways that the organization approaches problems and challenges. If you have a good attitude, show your commitment to working hard and understanding the problems at hand while asking well-thought questions, the organization will be happy to teach you everything else.
How did Eller prepare you for your internship?
Eller helped prepare me by allowing me to hone my presentation skills and my attention to the details. Additionally, Eller taught me to work hard, seek out new opportunities, and always remain positive in the face of challenges, new tasks, and obstacles.