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Katie Sharp '23

Senior Spotlight: Katie Sharp

Dec 7, 2023

As we approach Florida Southern College's Fall Commencement, we are excited to introduce some of our accomplished seniors.

Katie Sharp is set to receive her Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Master of Accountancy (MAcc). Her journey at FSC has been filled with academic achievements, including being named to Poets and Quants 2023 Best & Brightest list of Brightest Undergraduate Business Majors, leadership roles, and valuable real-world experiences that paved the way for her successful future.

Currently working towards earning her Certified Public Accountant license, Katie will begin her career as a tax accountant with BDO, the world's fifth-largest accounting network, this January with their Tampa office.

Q&A with Katie Sharp:
Reflecting on your time at FSC, can you share your involvement in different organizations or programs? How have these extracurricular activities enriched your college experience?
At FSC, I've actively participated in Beta Alpha Psi (accounting honor society), Phi Eta Sigma (freshman honor society), Beta Gamma Sigma (business honor society), the Dean's Advisory Council, Delta Sigma Pi (business fraternity), and Omicron Delta Kappa. Holding various leadership positions has allowed me to collaborate with fellow executives and honed my leadership skills. These organizations have made FSC feel like home, allowing me to meet like-minded individuals, make lasting friendships, and create unforgettable memories during trips to Tennessee and Texas with Delta Sigma Pi, FSC's professional business fraternity.

Real-world learning is a vital part of the FSC experience. Can you share any lessons learned through your experiences and how they've impacted your post-graduation path?
I've had two impactful summer internships with BDO in their Tampa office, working in the tax department. These experiences, from early June to August, exposed me to various tax specialties and helped me choose my focus for my full-time job. Learning new software, utilizing Excel, and preparing tax returns for review were essential aspects of my role. These internships have instilled in me the importance of a strong work ethic, a positive attitude, and a willingness to learn, qualities crucial for success in accounting or any other career.

How did Florida Southern contribute to your preparedness for success in accounting?
While my coursework and internships at FSC were undeniably valuable, what truly set me apart was the opportunity to participate in the Early MAcc program. Being in this program not only enabled me to graduate with both my bachelor's and master's degrees at the same time but also proved to be a pivotal element in preparing me for a successful career. This early initiation, coupled with hands-on internships, have allowed me to develop my professional skills, refined my communication abilities, and created a strong foundation in accounting fundamentals. The focus in these courses on technology and data analytics has helped me quickly adapt to tax software, a critical skill in navigating the workplace.

Were there specific pre-professional programs, career services, professors, or resources that you found particularly valuable? How did they guide your academic, professional, or personal growth?
Career Services and the accounting professors at FSC have been instrumental in my development. Career Services provided resources for perfecting my resume, participating in mock interviews, and attending professional networking events. The accounting professors guided me through the CPA exam preparation and offered continuous support and mentorship. It was at Meet the Firms, an event sponsored by Career Services and the accounting department, that I met a partner at BDO, and she urged me to apply for their summer internship program.

Looking back on your time as a student at Florida Southern, what will you miss the most? 
I will miss the organizations and the friends I've made most at FSC. The camaraderie and sense of family in Beta Alpha Psi and Delta Sigma Pi and cherished memories from trips and late-night study sessions have defined my college experience. FSC has not just been an academic institution for me; it's been a place where I've grown personally and professionally, forming bonds that will last a lifetime.