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How Do You Land an Accounting Internship at a Big Four Firm?

It’s only natural for top-performing accounting students to dream of being offered an internship at a Big Four firm. While students who have interned at these firms may not have had an associate, management, or executive title, there is some prestige in being offered an opportunity that college students are battling for every year.

The most efficient way to be noticed in the accounting field is to work hard and perform well while interning for a top firm. This is an invaluable way to gain professional experience as a student who has learned a lot of theory but still has not had the hands-on experience necessary to attain practical skills.

Resource: Top 10 Online Accounting Degree Programs

What Do You Need to Land an Opportunity?

It’s best to verify whether or not you realistically qualify for the intern role before you start submitting applications to the Big Four auditing firms. You may not need to be the top of your class to qualify for a position at a smaller local firm, but as the competition increases, so do the expectations from intern recruiters.

To be considered for an active opportunity, you will need to possess the best GPA possible. Some say that top firms only hire students with a 4.0 or higher, but the general rule of thumb is to apply only if you have a GPA above 3.5. It is also helpful to demonstrate experience outside of the classroom through participation in extra-curricular activities.

How to Fill Out an Application

Working in tax and auditing can be difficult without any professional experience. When applying for internship opportunities, it’s important to spend time and put thought into your cover letter and application. Make sure to personalize your cover letters for each firm and each opportunity, as well discuss your future goals and achievements thus far.

About a Couple of the Big Four Firms

Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC) offers tax and auditing services to over 400 different companies that have made the Fortune 500 list. The company also has offices in 158 different countries. Not only is the firm well-known for their services, it is also well-known for the student opportunities that are offered to current students and recent graduates. One of the great things about PwC internships is that they are narrowed down by the school. Simply select the school you attend, and you can find different openings that have been listed. The firm has opportunities in auditing, software engineering, assurance risk, data science, and tax processing.

KPMG is a firm that has been around for years and has established itself as a forward-thinking member of the finance community. The firm spends a great deal of time developing people, offering interns the opportunity to learn in one of four practice areas: audit, tax, advisory, and business support services.

There are plenty of different programs offering national-level training to students who are venturing away from campus. If you would like to complete an internship at a Big Four accounting firm, it is important to research your options, understand the qualifications necessary and highlight your qualifications in your applications.