When I think about where I am at this point in my educational and professional path—an accounting senior getting ready to graduate at the end of this year, a bookkeeper getting ready to start a second internship as an auditor, a future CPA—I cannot help but think that it all started with a simple question. Approximately one and a half years ago, I approached a small business owner and asked for the opportunity to learn from her. She conducted her own daily bookkeeping and I thought it would be a great opportunity to gain some real-world experience and get my foot in the door.
That experience paid off exponentially as it laid the foundation for my next major professional step; working as an auditor with a regional CPA firm this summer. This auditing internship started much like the first. I had to ask for it. After being told I wasn’t in the right year and that I should be focused on two-day leadership programs instead of full-time internships, I went out on a limb and asked for the opportunity anyway. Despite having never been one to buy into the “Ask and ye shall receive” mantras, as my own experiences have come to be shaped by it, I understand and appreciate the truth in it; if you don’t ask, the answer is always no.
If I could give one piece of advice to someone seeking an internship, it is to ask for it. The answer may not always be yes but the more you ask, the more opportunities you may get. In my experience, if you ask for the chance to get your foot in the door, it makes it significantly easier to get the door open and where you want to be.