Ignoring finals by thinking about London

Hi! My name is Lauren Harker and I am currently a sophomore Accounting major also pursuing an Economics minor and a Business Analytics certificate. I currently work as a student accountant in the Office of the Chancellor and will be interning at one of the big four accounting firms next summer! I am from Long Island, New York but have also lived in California, Singapore, and London, so I’m super excited to be able to go back!

In just 31 short days (yes, I have kept a countdown on my laptop desktop since it was 80 something days) I will be on my way to London! I am participating in the GBI London Accounting program, which means I will spend 6 weeks there taking one international accounting class while also working part-time in an internship. I have always dreamed of studying abroad in London and I can’t believe it’s actually coming true. The reason I’ve always wanted to study abroad there is because when living there, I fell in love with the city and ever since, I have contemplated the idea of living there for a few years in the future. For this reason, I think studying abroad in London would definitely help with deciding whether that’s something I really want to pursue or not.

Going off of this, some other things I want to take out of this program personally are more travel and more friends. Being in Europe, traveling to other countries will be very quick, easy, and cheap so I plan to travel around Europe after the program ends and on a couple weekends during the program. Traveling is one of my favorite hobbies, especially when its to other countries with different cultures. Additionally, I’m hoping to meet other people who are going abroad on this trip and become friends because ultimately when we go back to Pitt in the fall, they are the only ones who will understand what we experienced and will want to talk about it.

In an academic manner, I’m hoping to learn more about the accounting practice according to the IFRS rather than GAAP. Learning the key differences between the two and seeing them in practice will really help me grow academically and understand the practice better. Not only that but by participating in an internship, I will gain valuable hands-on experience and knowledge that I wouldn’t get otherwise.

Finally, in a professional sense, I hope to build connections with professionals in London so that if I choose to in the future, I can reach out to them and ask them more about working in London. This will be hard to do through simple site visits, but I am definitely hoping to build strong work relationships with those at my internship so that I feel comfortable reaching out to them in the future.

With only 31 days left until I take off for Heathrow, I am so incredibly excited. If you couldn’t tell from the title, I’ve completely skipped over thinking about the rest of the semester at this point and am instead solely planning for London. Honestly, people are probably already sick of me talking about my trip and it hasn’t even occurred yet. So stay tuned as the countdown continues and I start my adventures abroad!headshot