Developing My Skills Down Under

Working at TEG has been my first real internship experience, which was one of the main reasons I chose this program. I wanted to get that real world experience that required me to apply all of these skills and information I have been learning though my coursework. This internship has allowed me to draw those connections between things I’ve learned during my first two years at Pitt and how they will be applied in the real world. Though my internship is in the finance department, there is still a lot of accounting involved. I spend a lot of time looking at ledgers and journal entries and making sure those matched up with our bank account. Just having the knowledge to understand the terminology was really important, like accounts payable and receivable. Little things like that were a lot easier with the knowledge I have from financial and managerial accounting. More specifically from financial accounting, I was looking at debits and credits that I have done before in class exercises, but at my internship I saw real life journal entries for actual events that occurred. I feel like being able to see your coursework outside of of homework or exams deepens your understanding more and I understand some of the concepts from my accounting and finance classes a lot more now that I’ve actually worked on projects that have involved them. The application and understanding helps develop me professionally and prepare me for the corporate world.

There are a lot of skills that I’ve learned from my classes and my internship throughout this program. Inside of the classroom, I learned a lot about how to not only development myself more professionally through my internship, but how to get the most out of the experience. We only have a short 6 weeks here, so effectively absorbing the most I could out of my internship was really important to me. There was a lot of emphasis put on making sure that we also utilize our time to learn what was important to is. For example, I learned about company culture in class and then paid particular attention to company culture at my internship location to gauge how I felt about it. I also learned a lot of hard skills through my internship like navigating software and creating invoices while also developing my soft skills. I didn’t have to do too much teamwork but I did learn how to work closely with one or two people on projects, essentially smaller teams. Most importantly though, I really learned how to work by myself and figure out the little issues I ran into on my own. Often my supervisor would be busy so I couldn’t go to him with every little question I had. I learned to just take the time to search around to a certain extent till I could answer my own question.  These soft skills combined with the hard on the job skills will help me be successful in other opportunities down the road.

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