During the summer, many college students put what they learn in classes to the test through internships. UCLA prepares their students well on how to land an internship. Terry Li, a UCLA Business Economics major, worked for KPMG as an audit intern. Here are some things he would like to share about his experience.

What does a day at KPMG look like?

As an audit intern, I basically look at financial statements to make sure they are accurate. I arrive at the office at 8:30 a.m. First I ask around if anyone needs help with researching companies, documentation or verifying numbers. While tax interns work at cubicles, audit interns get to travel to different client sites. Since I worked in San Francisco, I usually took public transportation to go to client sites.

Why did you choose to be an accountant?

I researched various industries and decided that accounting is most suitable for me. I think consulting is too open-ended, and i-banking requires intense hours of work each week. As an accountant, I am able to interact with businesses and study how they operate effectively and ineffectively. I also enjoy working in teams and having collaborations.

What will you be doing after your final year at UCLA?

KPMG offered me a full-time position as an audit associate, and I have accepted. I am grateful and excited to start a full-time career right away out of college. I just have to make sure I take the CPA exam before 2014.

If you were not going to be an accountant, what other occupation interests you?

I have a fascination for buses. I think they are extremely interesting. I like the way buses move and how to build buses and even how to buy buses. I just find buses one of the most amazing inventions, so if I were not to be an accountant, I would be a bus driver. Buses have been one of the most useful things and have acted as instruments of mobility for me.

Are you working any jobs right now during the school year?

Each year, I have been working with ASUCLA concessions. I am now a student supervisor who trains new workers on how to operate machines and cash registers. I have learned so much at this job like how to direct and communicate with people. I am good at operating the nachos machine and even learned how to properly use a mop. When I first began this job, I got the chance to drive one of the electric cars. Additionally, I am working for Professor Pamara Berges as a tax intern in Woodland Hills. I commute there by bus.

What is your favorite class at UCLA?

I like Economics 106a – Economics in Practice where I learned about the California budget and discussed ways to mitigate it. I really enjoyed the professor Bill Simon as well; he even ran for governor in 2002.

What is the one thing you love most about UCLA?

Besides for the weather, I enjoy being among the happy medium between not crazily yet seriously studious people who define UCLA.

Where do you see yourself in the future?

My dream is to become a McDonalds or 7-11 franchisee. Like most kids, I loved to eat McDonalds happy meals. I noticed how every few blocks, there would be a McDonalds, and as I grew older, I started thinking about how one store could expand into a franchise that is so large, not only street to street but also country to country. I became very interested in this business, and now with all I’ve learned at UCLA, KPMG and each job I have had, I would be very content if I could own my own business.

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