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October 2, 2023

Trends in Campus Recruiting: Never Trust a Big Starbucks Card and a Smile

As we all know, firms of all sizes spend a lot of time and effort cruising campus to pluck the best and brightest from top accounting programs using all sorts of tactics like free dinner, tchotchkes, and even buttering up students' parents.

Now, there is a new form of campus predator: your fellow student.

We found this tidbit in the 2014 Accounting MOVE Project, a report that focuses on "the Return on Investment of women’s initiates within Firms" – an investment which starts on campus:

Although internship programs have existed at some firms for decades, many offices are shaking up traditional practices to net even greater results. Clark Nuber of Bellevue, Washington, has a secret recruiting weapon at Seattle University: Cassie Stanford. An intern since the summer following her sophomore year, and set to join the firm in October 2014, her on-campus part-time job is getting the word out to students that a local firm is interested in meeting them.

She has a fully loaded Starbucks card for treating other students to coffee, courtesy of Clark Nuber. She gives away water bottles and pens. She represents the firm at accounting honor society events and during autumn recruiting season, helps other students talk through their accounting career options, based on her stints in audit and tax.

“I think that I could get all the way to the top,” she says of her expectations for her career at Clark Nuber. “It’s exciting to start to invest in a firm where you’ll be and in clients you think you should get. Now, when I take my accounting classes, I’m thinking about big- picture things, instead of just debits and credits.”

Download the full report here. And be cautious when accepting coffee dates and/or water bottles.


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