Tapiwa Manjengwa's summer internship with Ernst and Young was a dream come true. Manjengwa came to Luther College to study accounting, and as one of the "Big Four" accounting firms, EY gave him the perfect place to start making those dreams a reality. "This opportunity gave me a platform to explore public accounting and get a glimpse of how the accounting profession operates, particularly the assurance service line," Manjengwa, a Luther senior, said.
Manjengwa performed audits for a manufacturing and retail client, as well as a healthcare client during his summer internship at EY in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He learned how to build professional connections and how the liberal arts factors into workplace teamwork.
Manjengwa, the son of Peter Manjengwa, graduated from the United World College of Southern Africa in 2013.
Paramount to his experience was the importance of building professional relationships within teams and with clients. "Auditing requires a lot of two-way communication, and for the procedures to be implemented smoothly everyone has to be engaged, which is enhanced by relationship-building," said Manjengwa.
Manjengwa quickly learned how Ernst and Young value teamwork, and responsibility across employee experience levels. As the only intern on some teams, he was given some of the same responsibilities as his full-time counterparts. This added responsibility helped him develop knowledge on manufacturing and retail and healthcare industries at a quicker pace than expected.
Developing a critical mind was essential to completing his work well. Manjengwa feels business and accounting courses at Luther helped him greatly in the development of his critical thinking skills on site.
His responsibilities within a given team included helping the team with walkthrough support documentation, updating spreadsheets with organizational control, and substantive testing for specific auditing procedures. During auditing, Manjengwa was able to directly interact with clients in developing questions and requesting information to achieve clarity, exhibiting what Manjengwa calls "professional skepticism."
Other skills Manjengwa developed include managing a personal schedule and being accountable for quality of work.
Through interacting with client executives and his team members, Manjengwa reaffirmed his decision that the accounting field is where he sees himself in the future. He has accepted a full-time position with EY following graduation. This internship gave him a platform to develop and utilize knowledge he gained through the liberal arts curriculum at Luther.
Approximately 10 percent of Luther students take an internship for academic credit each academic year. The Luther College Career Center assists students with their internship search through resume preparation, networking, online internship searches, career fairs, on-campus interviewing, and connecting the student to alumni through the college's Alumni Internship Program. Students also meet with a faculty adviser prior to the internship to create an internship learning plan that includes learning goals and assessment benchmarks. An internship work supervisor also assists in the process by writing an evaluation of the student at the end of the internship. Students also complete a self-reflection form to help finalize the learning experience.
A national liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2,050, Luther offers an academic curriculum that leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree in more than 60 majors and pre-professional programs. For more information about Luther visit the college's website: http://www.luther.edu.