Category Archives: Student Life

extracurricular activites, UT sports and other campus events, student organizations, recreation, etc.

Hear that?

That’s opportunity knocking at your door, right here in Austin!

This blog is the next in the series of blogs discussing the components that make Austin such a great city to go to school in. Austin is a city just brimming with opportunity. Whether it is internships or job opportunities, volunteering opportunities, or really any opportunity, Austin can provide it for you.

Internships/ Jobs

The lovely UT campus is located deep in the heart of Austin. A few blocks away from McCombs is the Texas Capitol, home of the Texas Senate and House of Representative. I had the opportunity to intern at the Capitol last spring to explore my interest in law and politics. After a semester as a legislative aide, I figured out that politics wasn’t my forte, but I am thankful that I had the opportunity to immediately find out it wasn’t a field I wanted to continue.

A few blocks from the Texas Capitol is downtown Austin, where opportunities for jobs and internships in almost every industry possible are readily available. As you read earlier, a fellow blogger Xinmiao interned at American Short Fiction and is currently interning at Greenlights for Nonprofit Success. The opportunities are seemingly limitless. Continue reading Hear that?

A long time ago, in a place not too far away…

One of the most appealing aspects of attending the University of Texas is the fact it is located in the heart of Austin. I know that I was a little nervous moving to a big city for college, but Austin is the perfect college town.  Why would I say that? First of all, I say that because the UT campus is off on its own on the north end of downtown Austin, so you get that feeling of being on a centralized college campus that is rare in urban universities. Second, the entire city seems to be compromised of Longhorn fans and alums, so you’ll see that welcoming shade of burnt orange everywhere you go. The other reasons Austin is a great place to go to school are Austin’s history, opportunities, entertainment and food.

To do the city justice, I will write a post about each of these components of Austin. Today, we are going to focus on the city’s history.

The Founding of Austin

The city’s recorded history began in 1830s when Anglo-American settlers arrived. These settlers eventually founded the city (then called Waterloo) along the banks of the Colorado River.  During this time period (around 1836-37), Texas had just won it’s independence and recently formed the Republic of Texas. In 1837, President Sam Houston established the Republic’s capital in Houston.  It was at President Mirabeau B. Lamar’s instructions that the Texas Congress purchase all the land of Waterloo and surrounding the banks of the Colorado River to establish a permanent Texas capital. The Texas Capital named the new city Austin in honor of Stephen F. Austin, “the father of Texas,” and officially chartered the city in 1839. Continue reading A long time ago, in a place not too far away…

Time Travel: The History of Accounting

Once a number cruncher, always a number cruncher!

The celebration of the UT Accounting Program’s centennial anniversary is fast approaching. What would be a better way to celebrate this longstanding success than looking back at how the field of accounting was born? This will be the first of a three-part series on accounting: how it started; how it’s viewed and used in today’s world; and how the accounting program was established and developed at UT.

It might be a surprise to some, but accounting is one of the oldest professions in history. Families and small communities had to account for food and other necessities in preparation for cold and harsh seasons. Researchers and anthropologists found evidence of accounting records that existed during the Babylon Empire. In other words, formal accounting records were already in existence since 4500 BC! They also found accounting records in the Code of Hammurabi which dates back to 2250 BC! This just proves that as business transactions and government tax systems became more complex, people knew that they had to account and keep track of their revenues and expenses. Continue reading Time Travel: The History of Accounting

A peek into how some things work.

Happy new year to everyone! I know I may be belated in saying this, but while we’re in the month of January, it still feels like the new year has just sprung.

I read an article the other day about resolutions. According to the article, social scientists have recently concluded that “willpower is a real form of mental energy powered by glucose in the bloodstream, which is used up as you exert self-control.” It’s interesting to think of willpower as being not only mental but also physiological. We’re depleting our stores of glucose whenever we attempt to pull ourselves away from immediate desires and wishes. (When faced with temptations, it’s like walking your 90 pound dog when there are squirrels in the vicinity).  The article’s thesis is pretty intuitive: avoid depleting those precious stores by knowing yourself and your weaknesses better and planning accordingly. I think about my precious glucose from time to time this semester, which is already looking like it’ll be a busy one.

This Spring, I’ll be working for the development team at Greenlights for Nonprofit Success, a nonprofit organization that provides services, consulting and otherwise, to nonprofits in the Central Texas area. It’s going great! On top of my daily duties, I am surrounded by nonprofit “shoptalk” and resources, have access to training sessions and workshops on topics from grant writing to board essentials, and am being thoroughly educated every day on the ins and outs of the industry. Greenlights is a small organization comprised of about 10 people all in love with nonprofits for one reason or another. My own fondness for nonprofits stems (quite simply) from their assertion of hope, which is infused into every mission statement out there. I’m reading a book right now that provides the following statistic, which I think is pretty interesting. Continue reading A peek into how some things work.

“Grew up in DFW, lived in Paris, loves cycling”

Tonight I attended the MPA: Building Connections workshop at McCombs. The workshop was led by Michelle Polkinghorn and she brushed us up on some crucial networking skills in preparation for the “Meet the Firms” recruiting kickoff this week at DKR Texas Memorial Stadium. For those of you who are not, or have not, recruited recently, “Meet the Firms” is an opportunity for students and firms to meet and connect with each other in a structured setting.

We were given a bunch of important tips but one particularly resonated with me.  When I returned home, I turned on The Office while I worked on some audit homework, and I was reminded of this tip and now feel obliged to pass it on to you all.

Michelle suggested that after talking with a recruiter, and receiving their business card, you should write on the back a few key facts about the recruiter or memorable talking points. Of course, this should be done out of view of the recruiter. Suggested were writing things such as “UT alum” or “Talked about our love for cycling.” Anything that will help you to create an actual memorable relationship with the person.

Tell me which sounds better:

1. “Oh, hi…do you remember me? We, um, talked before…at the event last week…”

OR

2. “Hello *recruiter’s name*, how are you doing? Did you ever get a chance to check out that bike trail we talked about last week at the brief and meet?”

I know I have a tendency to be extreme, but I hope you see my point.

Now back to The Office. This particular episode pits Dwight and Michael against each other competing for a big client. Although we can all agree that Michael can be a little bit radical and unreasonable in his business methods, he successfully employs this business card tip! In Michael’s case, he writes down facts about his clients’ families and likes/dislikes. Therefore, in a business setting, Michael delights his clients using the information he had written down.

Personal facts show his clients (and in our case, recruiters) that he cares about them and helps to maintain, as well as strengthen, their relationship.

My favorite clip from the episode reveals Michael’s thoughts on Dwight: