Kristin Secchia, Master's in Accounting'19, Bachelor's in Business Administration'18

When researching undergraduate programs, I chose D'Amore-McKim, like most students, because of their unique co-op program that sets their graduates far ahead of those from traditional universities. My co-op allowed me to begin building my career right away, even as a full-time student. As an undergrad, I had a great experience living in Boston and attending Northeastern University, so I chose to stay and earn my MS in Accounting because of D'Amore-McKim's PlusOne program.

The MS in Accounting PlusOne program allowed me to begin my master's degree while I was still finishing my undergrad degree and earn my master's that much faster. The program allowed me to take up to a total of 14 graduate credits during my senior year and apply those credits toward both my bachelor's and master's degrees. The ability to double count the courses also helped me to finish my undergraduate degree a semester early, and I was even able to continue using my undergraduate scholarships toward a portion of my master's degree. I chose to earn my master's degree immediately after my undergraduate degree because I needed an additional 30 credits so I would have the 150 credits required to sit for my CPA licensure exam, and the MS in Accounting PlusOne program seemed to be the most straightforward way to do so.

In my personal experience, the transition from an undergrad to graduate student was pretty seamless. Since Northeastern is generally a five-year school and I began my grad degree between my fourth and 5th years, so many of my undergraduate friends were still around campus and I didn't feel like I was staying behind to finish up classes. The MS in Accounting program has a relatively tight knit community with small class sizes and my graduate courses were with many familiar students from my undergrad classes.

The MS in Accounting PlusOne program allowed me to begin my master's degree while I was still finishing my undergrad degree and earn my master's that much faster.

Kristin Secchia, BSBA'18, MSA'19

In the summer between my 3rd and 4th year at Northeastern, I was able to participate in an accounting specific dialogue of civilizations 5-week study abroad trip to Barcelona. The trip included multiple company visits including the IBM headquarters in Madrid and cultural experiences like tours and cooking classes. The overall focus of the trip was comparing accounting practices between Spain and the United States. While abroad, I completed FR2 and Audit courses which were required for my degree with a small group of other Northeastern accounting students and two accounting professors. I think it is quite impressive that Northeastern has such specific programs that allowed me to fit in a study abroad experience while doing a double concentration (accounting and finance) and working on my accelerated degree.

Overall, I feel that D'Amore-McKim has fully prepared me for my future in a corporate environment in that I know what to expect as I join the workforce. The co-op program specifically has encouraged me to explore and try out different job opportunities. With over a year of full-time work experience thanks to my three undergraduate co-ops, I have been able to test out different job roles, and now I can be confident that my full-time position will be in an industry and role that I will enjoy.

I am excited to say that I have accepted a full-time job offer at PwC in their Philadelphia office with the Private Company and Personal Financial Services teams. Although the job offer is not contingent on earning my 150 credits, it is strongly encouraged and incentivized for first year associates to pass the CPA exam. Since this job offer comes from one of my previous co-ops, I feel fully prepared for my professional future. This allowed me to try out the position and I am very excited to return to the role full time.

Today, I am proud to say that I was able to graduate from undergrad in four and a half years with over one year of full-time work experience at a Big Four accounting firm, and half of my master's degree already complete. I believe the quality and ease of the co-op program truly gives accounting students a leg up in the professional world and I am excited to see what my future holds.

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