UC Davis MPAc Orientation: Building Lifelong Friendships and Landing Job Offers

Being part of the MPAc program isn't just an achievement—it's a gift.

Watch video: Aditya Prasad and fellow MPAc students share their experiences meeting recruiters at the Meet the Firms event during orientation.

“The friendships you make in graduate school will last a lifetime.”

Dean H. Rao Unnava shared with our incoming class to kick off the five-day orientation for the Master of Professional Accountancy (MPAc). He said we would make connections with peers, faculty, and accounting professionals.

I decided to enroll in the MPAc program based on the culture and environment that supports and helps students. The Graduate School of Management (GSM) staff, faculty, and community strive to guide us to succeed and emphasize skillsets that support our life after graduate school. The small, collaborative, and tight-knit community makes it easy to connect with my entire cohort.

Orientation and the curriculum are built to help students excel in the real world. The GSM faculty use their experience, knowledge, and skills to teach students how to face and deal with challenges in the workforce and life in general. 

Advice from the Career Development Director

Orientation included introductions and networking with the GSM faculty and staff. Senior Director of Career Development Antoine Broustra met with us to offer tips on how to land job offers and network with peers.

My favorite piece of advice was when he encouraged us to slowly practice stepping outside our comfort zone when interacting with others. He helped alleviate our fears by reminding us that the individuals we interact with are also humans, and employers want to interact with people they will enjoy working with regularly. Also, communication is a two-way street. 

Elevator Pitches and Mock Interviews

The faculty gave real-time feedback after we presented elevator pitches and rehearsed mock interviews. I was paired with Kevin Mello, my former undergraduate accounting professor at UC Davis, who gave me constructive input on my presentations. I practiced my interview skills with Lecturer Xinlei Li. She was very kind and patient, but also provided instructional feedback that helped me ace three job interviews!

Aditya Prasad at the Meet the Firms 2023
Aditya Prasad met numerous recruiters, alums and accounting firms at the annual Meet the Firms event. 

Meet the Firms

The best part about orientation was the Meet the Firms event. An exclusive event for UC Davis MPAc students, Meet the Firms offered us one-on-one time with nearly 30 companies and agencies seeking UC Davis accounting talent.

We had the opportunity to network with employers from the Big 4, top regional firms, and public government agencies to learn more about their cultures and to see which is the best fit for us.

The MPAc staff prepared us beforehand on how to best interact with employers, and faculty members like Executive Director Will Snyder went out of their way to help calm our anxieties by introducing us to employers.

I will forever be thankful to the GSM for organizing this event, where I landed three job offers within a month. Without the support of the MPAc program and faculty, I would still be struggling to get a full-time offer. 

One Month of MPAc, Three Job Offers

I would strongly implore undergraduates to apply for the UC Davis MPAc program. If you fully leverage the tools and resources the MPAc program offers, you can make your dreams come true.

Not only are MPAc students supported in job placement, but we also get a chance to network with various individuals and develop life skills that will help them succeed in life.

I have been part of the MPAc cohort for less than a month, but I have already realized how much I’ve benefitted. I received multiple job offers, formed connections with peers, faculty, and employers, and strengthened my knowledge base.

Being part of the MPAc program isn't just an achievement—it's a gift. I have worked hard to be part of this cohort and will forever be grateful for everything this program has done for me

Editor’s note: Aditya Prasad enjoys blogging variety of finance topics. You can read more of his personal blogs on Blogger: https://www.blogger.com/profile/0232930283886412923