For the second year running, Big Four Accounting Firm KPMG has selected one of George Mason University's accounting students for its Future Diversity Leaders (FDL) program. The FDL program is a leadership development and scholarship program for minority students in business curriculums.
Participants receive financial and professional support through mentoring relationships with FDL faculty advisors and KPMG professionals. The opportunities are immense for program participants, as students who successfully complete their internships while maintaining their high academic achievement will receive a full-time job offer from KPMG.
Last year, KPMG began inviting applicants from Mason for this highly selective program, which admits only 60 students nationwide. This year, Laquasia LeGrand, a freshman at the School of Business, has been selected as one of 60 FDL interns for KPMG.
LeGrand came to Mason from Brooklyn, New York. She is currently majoring in accounting and hopes to double minor in nonprofit management and criminology. After graduation, she aspires to become a certified public accountant and work for one of the "Big Four" accounting firms. Her long-term goal is to establish a nonprofit organization to aid troubled youth in Brooklyn. Although establishing a nonprofit may be further down the road for LeGrand, her dream of working for one of the Big Four is now closer than she may have originally thought.
During her three-year internship with KPMG, LeGrand hopes to further develop her teamwork, computer, and communication skills that will aid in her growth as a student leader and future business professional. In addition to personal growth, she is eager to begin the internship for the monumental professional opportunities.
"I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to network with professionals in the field, learn the culture of the firm, and discover which field of accounting I would ultimately like to pursue," explains LeGrand.
Robert Pawlewicz, assistant professor of accounting, will continue to serve as the faculty mentor for LeGrand and Mason's 2013 FDL internship participant, Jennifer Khoo.
LeGrand also stays actively involved in the community and on Mason's campus. She is a member of multiple student organizations, including the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA), the Consultant Club, and the Black Student Alliance. In the fall of 2014, LeGrand will expand her campus involvement and begin serving as a resident advisor and peer advisor saying, "I'm excited to serve as a mentor and be able to have a positive impact on the incoming students at Mason through these roles."
In addition to having a student selected for the FDL internship, Mason yet again tops the list of area business schools with the most full-time hires and interns by KPMG in 2014. With a total of 32 students selected as full-time hires and interns, Mason surpassed American University, Georgetown University, and George Washington University. The breakdown includes 13 full-time hires, three winter interns, 12 summer interns, three students selected for the Discover Leadership program, and LeGrand–selected for the FDL program.