The move to Phoenix went smoothly and I’m settling into life in this hot and dry town. I am sharing an apartment with an NAU friend who’s also doing an internship a few buildings down from mine. The weekend was spent lazing in the hot tub, lounging by the pool, and exploring shopping areas of Scottsdale, Phoenix, and Tempe. I’ve been buying a lot of new clothes since most of mine are still in Flagstaff and the business clothing I have is not new. Orientation is at the firm on Monday .
The beginning of this internship brings me closer to another critical decision point in my life/career. College has gone well for me: I’ve learned a lot about business and a lot about life, found an assortment of intelligent and reputable people I am honored to call friends, and have been fortunate to form good relationships with recruiters, managers, and partners of prestigious firms. As a result of these connections, many people have helped me financially with education costs and student debt is much lower than anticipated.
My original plan was to attend a state school for my undergrad and then find a private school for graduate studies. I gave up that idea during the first semester at NAU—completely gave up the idea because I quickly realized that undergrads from here did not even have a chance at getting into most private grad programs without prior work experience that only undergrads of private schools can attain. I buried the idea and focused on studies and starting a career in the business consulting field. I haven’t revisited the idea even once. Until now.
I have a fighting chance at an elite internship opportunity that would: 1) get me CPA certification, 2) provide work experience that would qualify me for an Ivy League graduate program, 3) pay off all my student loans with a lot of money to spare, and 4) be an invaluable experience working directly with C-level executives and Wall Street investment bankers. It’s heady stuff, and I want to make the right decision. It’s hard to look beyond the reasoning that so few people have this opportunity, and therefore, I need to take it. My professors, my friends, and the college are behind me—all I need to do is make the decision.
During the next few weeks, I’ll have my eyes and ears open. I’m looking forward to meeting more people and learning more about the corporate system. I want to keep building technical skills and solving problems. It’s what I do best.