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Feb. 21, 2022 LA GRANDE, Ore. – A bit of initiative goes a long way when building a foundation for a career. For one Eastern Oregon University student, all it took was a single email from their professor to kickstart the journey into the professional world.
EOU business major Emilee Burch earned a competitive internship at Boise-based auditing firm Myers and Stauffer after hearing about the opportunity through College of Business faculty.
“I’m getting ready to graduate so I was looking for a job. I thought that it would be a good chance, because it’s an internship, to get a feel for what it was and that if I did like it then it was something I could do after I graduate,” Burch said.
In fact, the firm invited Burch to join their team full-time following her graduation this spring.
Like most business moves, an extensive network of mentors and colleagues ensured that students at Oregon’s Rural University had access to such an opportunity. Alumni in the industry reached out to their alma mater, informing deans and faculty of the prestigious internship. Assistant Professor of Accounting Brooke Stout encouraged students in her auditing class to apply last fall.
Burch began the internship on Jan. 10. Her work consists of a variety of projects meant to introduce her to the business, mostly related to auditing and reviewing Medicare and Medicaid information.
“Most of what I’ve been doing is auditing people’s Medicaid and Medicare for different hospitals, mostly in Utah. So, we go through how much they say providers are paying for Medicare and audit that and make sure it matches up,” Burch said.
The internship was open to students at a host of universities throughout the Pacific Northwest.
“I would definitely recommend it for any student. They’re very good to work with, very flexible. They want to make sure that my school comes first. They are very willing to work around me if I have things to do as far as school, so it’s been really nice that way,” Burch said.
Burch’s experience is not unique to business students. Faculty across the university connect and advocate for their students, offering guidance as soon-to-be graduates seek job experience in their desired field.
“I think the easiest way for students to get involved or notified is to reach out to us professors and say, ‘Hey, I’m looking for something actively,’ then we can send things directly to those students. The other accounting professors and I, we blast anything that we get to our classes so that they get these announcements saying, ‘Hey, this company is looking for an intern. If you want to give it a shot go ahead and apply,’” Stout said.
EOU’s Career Services Center is a hub for jobs, internships and professional help for students of any major. In the College of Business, Stout said faculty are ready to lend a hand.
“We’re always very willing to help with applications and with resumes. Being proactive as a student and taking the opportunity to apply for those things is huge. Emilee said it’s hard when you’ve been passed over for one in the past. It makes it even more intimidating to apply, but you definitely need to just keep at it,” Stout said.
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