All About an Accounting Internship at CK

In the following videos, Damian Contreras, an in-charge tax accountant, who was formerly an intern at Cray Kaiser, gives an inside perspective about what it is like to be an intern at CK. If you are an aspiring professional seeking insights into the inner workings of CK, these videos offer a glimpse into the realm of an accounting internship.

What It’s Like to be an Intern at CK

My name is Damian Contreras and I’m an in-charge tax accountant. I was looking around and I already had a job lined up for a big four internship and I wanted to see what smaller firms had to offer as well. And I found Cray Kaiser and after interviewing and meeting with the people I thought it would be a great fit to try out a very hands-on tax season internship.

I noticed that the bigger firms you’re more stuck in, one area versus at Cray Kaiser, you can work in all departments in any given day and that’s one of the factors on why I chose working here. It started out heavy in hands-on training and then we started preparing simple tax forms 1099s. I gravitated more towards business returns my initial year here so I worked heavily in preparing business returns for some of our smaller family-owned businesses that we have. And then like everyone else I moved into the individual 1040 land which is also a very heavy season here. Preparing business returns initially was my favorite because they balance in the end and as an accountant that was very, it was gratifying.

Just how much you can learn if you’re willing to and that small amount of time I remember during my interviews they told me everything I’d learned in three months span and I got off the phone and laughed. I was like there’s no way that’s going to happen and then after the internship I walked away saying wow I’ve learned a lot and you know they invited me back and I was like just think about how much more I can learn in another three month span there. I worked into the summer and through the next fall and tax season and they’re very big on putting you in even on their firm CPE trainings as an intern. While you don’t need it they want you to be there to hear the new standards that are coming out and to partake in all the extra education opportunities beyond just basic intern training.

I’ve found that recently it’s a very energetic culture, especially when we’re here during tax season until ten or eleven o ‘clock at night. We have a lot of fun and we play games or talk over the cubicle walls. You know when we’re working our Saturday weekends we have Saturday games in the cafeteria that turn into competitions audit versus tax.

I’ve always liked the open-door policy that everyone has to ask questions and come in and talk and work on your own development with them.

What You Learn

My name is Damian Contreras and I’m an in-charge tax accountant. Bring a willingness to learn. It’s one of our values as education. And I’ve seen other interns here and I assisted in running the internship program. You need the willingness to learn and try to research on your own. A lot of things you can at least come into the meeting with understanding because if you don’t and they’re explaining it to you, you’re going to be lost. So it’s definitely that education and wanting to learn, especially in our industry, it’s ever changing every year with new regulations.

My second internship, they actually let me assist in running some of the trainings and kind of taking charge of the intern group. And we start out normally on Martin Luther King Day because everyone has the day off and we hit the ground running with 1099 trainings and then, we work into our business trainings and then eventually individuals in certain complex areas will have separate trainings, Then we’re giving you hands -on work. You’re in there preparing the returns, asking questions, you will get some contact with the clients. We’re going to put you out on audit engagements. One of my colleagues and I were talking about that this morning trying to schedule everything out because we want the internship experience to give you well-rounded as a whole. We don’t want you to only see tax. We want you to see audit because that’s the big question you get audit or tax. So without seeing both, how do you know to make that decision?

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