Become A CPA

Become A CPA

What My Membership Means to Me: Chad Norris

by Chad Norris | Jun 06, 2017

I was surprised when I found out that networking is a huge part of an accountant’s professional life. I have been encouraged to develop my networking skills by every professor and professional I have spoken with as an accounting student. Despite the fact that I have 20 years of customer service and client development experience, I recognized the need to hone my skills in this area. As a non-traditional student, developing these skills seemed crucial in allowing me to stand out during recruitment; all I needed were the opportunities to help me with this process. While the WSCPA has provided ample opportunities to develop my skills, I could not have imagined how being a part of this organization would change my professional development.

When I committed myself to improving my networking skills, the WSCPA was my first stop. It was a huge draw to know how this organization provides the chance to meet professionals at an array of different activities throughout the year. Networking can be difficult and awkward for most people and, when combined with my own introverted tendencies, can be downright terrifying. However, I felt very welcomed by the professionals at my first event. This was also when I met a fellow WSCPA member who offered me an internship at a publicly-traded company.

After gaining more confidence at other WSCPA events, I expanded my interactions to more diverse networking events using the skills I learned. I had no idea that at one of these networking functions I would meet the person who would be my final-round interviewer for my next internship. When I walked into that interview and saw a familiar face, my confidence soared. I received an offer for a position this summer. All of this happened in less than a year. My commitment to developing my skills only brought me so far on this journey; I credit my membership with the WSCPA for bringing me the rest of the way.

Chad Norris is an accounting student at Seattle University, a recipient of the WSCPA Washington CPA Foundation Accounting Scholarship, and the Vice President of Reporting for Seattle University's Beta Alpha Psi chapter.

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