Technology Careers

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How did your undergraduate STEM classes prepare you for your work at PwC?

I think the biggest impact of having an engineering degree was learning the thought process of solving difficult problems. My engineering classes taught me how to approach problems and dig through the details until I found the answer. I currently work in Tax and I apply that same thought process today. I look through the Internal Revenue Code, Treasury Regulations, form instructions, etc., and I believe the engineering background provided me with helpful tools on how to approach and research the issues my clients are facing.

Describe the kind of data you are analyzing.

Company financial statements are very useful in our line of service. We normally get Trial Balances in excel that list out all the transactions the company took during the taxable year. We have to analyze that information and look for certain tax items to ensure we are properly reporting the taxable income. We also get Fixed Asset reports that list the depreciation expense for every asset the company owns. This sometimes can be in the 1,000s, so being able to review and analyze the data efficiently is very important.

How was this type of work done previously without STEM (or data analytics) skill sets?

I’d say the biggest change was how time consuming others without a STEM skill set found the same jobs. My STEM skills allowed me to analyze information quickly and spend more time on the actual tax compliance, as opposed to reading data. That was a huge benefit early in my career.

What have you learned from your experiences?

Be ready for anything. One day you’re talking Chemical Engineering, the next it’s Tax. Enjoy the ride

What skills would set students apart?

Attitude. Anyone with the right mindset can learn what we do. By having the right attitude and work ethic, you’ll succeed here. Be open, ask questions and be a positive impact on your teams.

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