Aaron's rant Round 2, Internship edition

Round-two from Aaron here, I enjoyed writing my last blog about Belize so much that I agreed to write a post about my internship experience. So here goes:

I just finished my internship with PwC, one of the Big 4 Accounting Firms (sounds legit, I know). Being in the assurance (auditing) side of the firm, I spent little time in the main PwC Office located in San Jose, rather, I spent most of my time out at my assigned client’s headquarters. My two clients were Tesla Motors and Nvidia Corporation.

Tesla was right up my alley. For those who are not familiar with my McKell pedigree, we have always been into admiring, working-on/restoring, and driving cars. Of course, I’m a Ford guy, but Tesla was makes quite the product. Tesla builds fully electric luxury sports cars. They just rolled out their Model-S which is comparable to a BMW on steroids. The dash has a huge interactive touch screen the size of two iPads, but don't you worry, our little Nissan Sentra isn't going anywhere. The Model S comes with an affordable price tag of $80,000. And if you hurry before the election, President Obama will give you a $5,000 coupon on your taxes haha. Sadly, I was not able to test drive any of the cars, (although I was hoping they would ask me to “value their inventory” J.). Instead, I spent a lot of time doing things that most interns do: I rolled forward databases, made connections between the financial statements and the evidence we had gathered, and of course, ordered and picked up lunch. I learned a lot about the day to day comings and goings of an auditor and I could see myself doing the tasks that I and my teammates were assigned. I got to spend time helping various team members on projects where I felt challenged to understand what Tesla was trying to do. I enjoyed trying to solve the puzzle. Oh yah, lunch was great! I was always scared I was going to mess something up, the Senior Manager was admittedly a very picky individual so I always double checked my order. Luckily, there were no mishaps!

At Nvidia in Santa Clara, they engineer and designs graphics chips for computers and mobile devices. While I never saw the chips themselves I am told that most likely we are using their chips in our computers right now. I just feel like I'm providing the world with everything they need. Cars, and graphics! I learned a lot about how semiconductor companies work. I learned a fabs and fabless companies (those are technical terms, but are pretty funny to say) and how they manage their business endeavors differently to counter the cyclical nature of the semiconductor industry. I got to complete some interesting projects including helping gather data for a industry report that PwC would use in the future to help their clients compare what they are doing to other companies in the industry. The highlight of my time at Nvidia was definitely on the last day. Nvidia just issued their press release for the quarter and as part of tradition went to a local restaurant for drinks and appetizers to celebrate another successful quarter. I, of course, took the opportunity to order two very delicious strawberry lemonades. While those were good, the story gets better. I sat next to the CFO of Nvidia and we had a great (yet quick) conversation. She asked me about my schooling and my plans for the future, and her opinion of public accounting (she said it was absolutely essential and that she wouldn’t go back haha! She left as a senior manager).

Now fast forward to today. Believe it or not, I am actually typing this from the cloud. Nope, not the internet, but truly the cloud(s). I’m on a plane heading back from Orlando, FL where I have spent the last four days at Walt Disney World! BOOM BABY! I thought that was pretty whitty, maybe you did too, may not. Anyways, the trip is a nationwide internship training meeting that finished off the internship experience in style. We stayed at the Grand Floridian Hotel (super nice!). Don't google it because you'll be blown away. I don’t think I’ve ever been to a nicer hotel. Yah, the only sad part about this is that Caroline could not accompany me. They know how to give great service too, it seems like everyone who was working truly loved to be there. And, not to mention any way they could input a little Mickey Mouse was done inconspicuously. The intern training session, labeled IDP (Intern Development Program), is a lot like what I label as an adult version of a Especially For Youth (EFY) session. For those who are not familiar with EFY, it is a church sponsored event for youth that is filled with a lot of inspirational speakers and team building activities. And don’t get me wrong, I loved EFY. At IDP, were always encouraged to be enthusiastic, improve team reliance, and of course have fun! We got to spend time in Epcot, Hollywood Studios (previously Universal Studios) and Animal Kingdom (get this, they closed down the park from 9:00pm to 11:30pm for us to ride the rides and play the games), it was all great fun.
My team
Throughout the week, we had different team activities to keep our competitive juices alive. Prizes were awarded to the winning teams. My favorite team event had to be the culinary challenge. We were all in teams of about 10 (including a Partner). We were taken to a big warehouse type location where each team  was set up with a couple tables, burners, cutting boards, utensils and various types of food. Our job was to create a delectable meal that would be judged by the top chefs who work at Disney, pretty intimidating eh? We had limited ingredients, so we had to choose wisely what we were going to create. Our dish was so good! We started things out with a salad and homemade/homecreated dressing, I’m actually not sure what it all had, but I know we had lime and orange juice in it. Very zesty! Then we had a subeche (I probably spelled that wrong, but when you are a chef, you have to use big foreign words that no one understands, it makes for a better presentation!). Subeche is a fish dip (we used Mahi) and accompanied it with some homemade potato chips (thanks to Aunt Sherry for teaching me!). The main course was steak fajitas. We didn’t have any tortillas provided so we decided to make our own! The tortillas were definitely the judges favorite, very original and creative, they said no one has ever done that before. We included some rice on the side with carrots, celery and something else (I can’t remember, but it was good!). Finally we made some rice-pudding for dessert. Good thing we made enough for our team because I definitely wanted to sample everything as we went. Around the room, Disney chefs would be scattered to help us with the many different questions we had concerning our dish. We received a lot of help, and in turn they repeatedly tasted our rice-pudding haha. I guess we live in a give-and-take world. We won the event and for our wonderful dish we received a fabulous prize. Are you ready? Brand new iPad 3s, one per person!  BOOM BABY! Can you believe it! PwC doesn’t mess around! I was so stoked, well, am stoked. Can I get another BOOM BABY! YES! They are going to mail it to us, I can’t wait. I’ve held back buying one for a couple years now, saying I would use my bonus money from passing the CPA exam on one. Now I’ll have to find another way to motivate myself to finish that test (let’s not talk about that, I still have a year before that can of worms is opened up. I’m sure I’ll be writing another post about it J.

Well, my battery is getting low and I think its time to turn on another round of Journey. Gotta love "Separate Ways" (Shout out to Annie!). Hope you enjoyed my “quick” column. I’ll try and make them a little shorter in the future.

Happy day and Aaron out.

1 comment:

  1. Loved everything about this hun! Great synopsis :) And I am just really excited for you to cook that delicious, award winning meal for me soon!

    Love you, Caroline