Thursday, May 28, 2009

another day at work.

Tomorrow concludes my first week of work at my accounting firm. Verdict? I need more time in order to form a more cohesive opinion, but I do like my colleagues quite a bit. They're funny, easy to talk to, and very willing to show a new person the ropes. This part of my education in the comm school is being realized in full in the real world -- group work. I'm on a team of four - one junior accountant, one senior, one manager, and one partner. This will be the group I work with for the entire summer, and a group that some of the members have worked with for four or five years.

What's unique about this firm is that there's quite a lot of travel. This has definitely been an eye opening experience for me as I've been centrally based in one location all my life. This particular firm also works with many local government and public school clients, and does anything from tax to audit to consulting (I'm sad to say I missed the tax season though, so I won't have an opportunity to experience that).

We're currently in the middle of doing preliminary work for audits (busy season for governments is October and November, when all the papers need to be filed). I've been commuting to Louisa county this week (still living in C'ville!), working with the county government, social services, and public schools. I've run tests of random disbursements, VRS, 941, and tracing receipts. I'm traveling to Greensville next week, and I'm pretty excited about what else I will do.

What's not unique to this firm, but is common only amongst the middle to smaller sized businesses (aka not Big 4) is the opportunity for career advancement and opportunity to take on a lot of responsibility. The lead partner of my team made partner before he was 30! O_O I know, quite unheard of unless you start your own business. Speaking with my colleagues, they feel that they had the opportunity to really make a difference with their work and to take on responsibility that would come much more slowly at a big firm. -- This is one of the biggest things I'm struggling with this summer, go for a big firm or a regional firm? It's something I'm going to have to figure out in three months - when recruiting begins for accounting firms!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

woof woof!

I'm currently crashing at my friend's place before my lease begins at another friend's place. A mutual friend has been here for most of the time I've been here, and her dog is here as well. So there's two crazy pooches running around that my friends dissolve into big baby voices whenever they see the canines. Not a dog person myself, I don't understand it. One of them is a pit bull, and the other is.. a.. Jack Russell (?). 

Before anyone gets excited though, students aren't allowed to have pets in dorms. We're only allowed to have non lethal fish (so for all you piranha lovers.. got to leave them at home). If you can't live without your dog or cat, you'll have to live off Grounds. Bear in mind you'll also have to pay an extra pet fee each month for your apartment. My friend lives off Grounds, in a beautifully decorated apartment. I really like living here, and will love my next place as well as my other friend has been so kind to leave me a 47 inch flat screen TV in his room. Whee! =D

mmm.. such is life.

I'm currently curled up up a couch, freshly washed laundry waiting in the dryer, back from a day of work, just finished spaghetti I made yesterday (broccoli, green beans, onions, mushrooms, meat, super vegatable primavera Ragu, and Japanese soba noodles), watching CSI: Miami, and the night is young. Ahh, such is life. =D

I've held internships/jobs in Cville every summer since I've been here, and this year is no different. Being as I'm an accounting and management concentrator in the commerce school, I applied for accounting internships this year. I decided to work at a big Virginia accounting firm on Route 29, I'd quantify it as a mid sized firm. I actually just came back from my first day of work in Louisa county. My firm services about 75% of Virginia, and during the audit season, travels all around Virginia. I'm travelling to Louisa this week, and Greensville next week. I like the people, they're really friendly, and I'm still trying to figure out what exact type of accounting I want to go into when I graduate. I hope to eventually go for forensic/litigation accounting, but who knows?

Mm, I have to say that out of all the CSI series, CSI: Miami is my favorite (agree, disagree?). I seemed to have caught a really early episode though. The guy who plays Horatio almost has a mohawk, and Emily Proctor has really long hair. Kind of odd O_O. Emily Proctor is also an alumni of my sorority (haha, definitely gave away that information about  me)! =)

Okay, I just saw the musical version of Wendy's new coffee toffee twisty whatever thing, and it's kind of scary..

Saturday, May 16, 2009

it's time to leave...

Tomorrow morning at the Rotunda, 1/4 of the University's student population will bid farewell to these hallowed grounds and set out into the real world.

It's graduation time.

The chairs have been set up all over Grounds (and I suspect tents too, given the torrential downpour occuring), graduation parties are on going at various apartments and at Alumni Hall (I have to say, the fraternity across the street is taking the graduation party a bit far. I'm really annoyed at the fourth hour in a row of screaming metal music. They are our lovely neighbors and all, but please they need better music taste), tickets have been handed out, pretty much all is in readiness -- are the graduates ready? Who knows? 

For me, my feelings at the end of this year are those of relief, sadness, and eagerness. Relief that I'm not the one graduating and my rather hellish first year of comm school is over, sadness that my fourth year friends and sisters are graduating and that I didn't have more time to spend with them, and eagerness for the summer and year ahead. I suspect that college graduation will be a much more emotional time for me than high school graduation. So many memories, so many close friendships, somehow high school seems like a distant memory right now.

Right now, I hope that traffic won't be too horrible tomorrow and that it's raining rather than sweltering heat. I might change my mind next year, but I'd take slushy mud over people fainting left and right in the sun.

Speaking of graduation. I'm in complete denial that I'm a fourth year now. What? What's that you say? I'm definitely a third year still. Nope, I'm not in my last year of college. You're utterly insane. 

who says c'ville is boring in the summer?

Some people say that Charlottesville is boring during the summertime because all the students clear out. Having spent all three of my summers in C'ville, I think I qualify as somewhat of an expert on this topic. Why all three summers? Meh, mostly a mixture of knowing the area, not quite wanting to spend the entire summer at home, and having jobs and internships here.

Most people are somewhat preoccupied during the summer anyway because they're here for classes or an internship. So what to do outside of work/class time? I will concede, you have to know some people who are also staying in town, or have folks your age at wherever you're working. The past week, I've filled my days with lunches and dinners with friends, some tennis in the afternoon at Snyder, movie nights (I'm currently on a sci fi and romantic comedy kick), yoga and dance classes at Studio 206 on the downtown mall, and just plain a lot of hanging out with friends. 

Apart from what I like to do, there's lots of hiking and biking trails for the outdoorsy minded, Ashlawn Highland and Monticello for the history lovers, one hour drive to Shortpump + Stony Point and two hours from Tysons for those who like to shop, beautiful countryside for those who like the country, Corner and downtown bars and clubs for party goers, and so on and so forth.

Sounds great, but for those who are coming from a huge city (like I did), it's definitely a difficult transition. I got used to C'ville and love it now, but people who like the hustle and bustle and everything that can be found in a city would definitely find C'ville to be boring at first. It's especially bad in the summer time because if you don't know anyone who's left here, you'll be bored out of your mind.

Having just almost completely negated what I said in the first part of the post, I actually still love spending my summers in C'ville. It's a great time to rest and recharge from the school year simply because most of the students aren't here. It's a completely different feeling, and I enjoy having the place to myself. That's not to say the town just dies, there are quite a few people who live here irregardless of the school.

Bottom line is? You'll have to form your own opinion. But as a city girl (massive city, seven million people, yeah) who came here, I absolutely love it here. I'd want to live here when I want to settle down in a life. Great environment, friendly people, and still relatively cheap cost of living.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

so.. about them finals.

Finals, such an exciting topic to talk about. They're all pretty much the same so I'll spare you the gory details, other than my accounting professor out to get us on our final, and my comm school final was weird. One of the essay topics was to write an abstract for the class. Really now?

One thing that I forgot to go to, that I'm still kicking myself a bit for, is a midnight impromptu rave at Clemons' library. Every finals period, a MASSIVE facebook event goes out to the student body calling everyone to come to Clemons' library at midnight on Sunday for some stress relieving. Picture about a thousand students dancing to music, and possibly throwing and shredding notes for those who're done with that particular subject. I was going to go, but completely forgot about it. Grrrr!

Look forward to more updates, but first I've got to go and look at cars. I'm getting a car this week. Woot! I'm leaning towards a Toyota myself, or possibly a Honda. Any suggestions from you guys?

my thoughts on the new Star Trek movie..

So what does a girl do when her finals are over? Other than make a half hearted attempt to pick up her room... she goes up to Northern Virginia to watch the new Star Trek movie of course! =D Teehee, I am one of the biggest Trekkies out there. I think my friend's jaw almost fell to the floor in surprise when he muttered "the starship Enterprise..." and I replied with "NCC 1701-D" once. I got the midnight showing at Fairfax corner, and here are my humble thoughts.

I have to say, it's not Star Trek to me, but it was a most excellent movie. It's not Star Trek in the sense that there's always a certain feel in Star Trek movie and episodes - darker, more.. weighty in terms of the moral and scientific matters they deal with. Of course, part of the feeling of Star Trek comes from more dated technology and special effects, but I felt that this movie was a cross between Weasley's Wizarding Wheezes and Battlestar Galactica. All the brightness! The fancy schmany technology. And horror of horrors, that awful beaming effect! I hate all the swirls of lights, the TNG version with the shimmering out was so much better. Call me a traditionalist but I was horrified by the light up toy that the Enterprise was. (But I still clapped along with everyone else when its first view was shown. Oh, and that battle scene in which Kirk's father sacrificed himself? Truly amazing, and I do admit to having a few tears in my eyes when he died).  

However, despite boos from this particular fan, it was still such a great movie. I loved seeing all the main characters when they were cadets (although Ahura's got to explain how she got such a big 'fro later on), and the actor who played Spock stole the movie for me. Kirk was meh, alright, but Spock was awesome. That scene when all the Vulcan children were being tested? Oh my goodness, I'd rewatch it just to witness that again. I really enjoyed watching Kirk beating the Kobayashi Maru test though. "Three Klingon warbirds decloaking.. what should we do?" "Oh really, well nothing!" Kirk pulls out an apple and eats it.. hahaha.  

I agree with so many fans that decried the breaking of continuity. But from that, it's obvious that they're restarting the franchise, and thus I can't hate the movie too much for doing that. I'd throw both hands up in support for anything that restarts Star Trek. TNG was my favorite out of all of them, but it's been much too long since it ended. However, other than resettling the Vulcans, what else can be in the new storyline? I await with baited breath. :D (And alright, it's a good thing that Vulcans are supposed to have a tight lid on their emotions, otherwise I'd be so severely depressed if my race just went from 6 BILLION to 10 THOUSAND. Goodness.)