Jessica Lao

Jessica Lao

University of California, Los Angeles

"I am constantly learning and continuing to develop stronger relationships with our clients and my co-workers."

I had just started recruiting and meeting professionals when I was first introduced to HCVT.  I was a junior at UCLA and excited to accept a tax internship. At the time, I had no idea what to expect and planned to continue recruiting with other firms in the upcoming fall quarter. From the moment I started my internship, I was matched with a mentor and a buddy, who helped me acclimate to the firm and provided guidance over my career. My buddy was my first friend at HCVT and made me feel right at home.  She was always available to answer questions and took the time to check in on my progress and keep me busy with real tax work. But my internship wasn't just about work; there were also plenty of summer events and buddy lunches! From volunteering with Habitat to Humanity to indoor rock climbing, I had a lot of time to bond with my co-workers and get to know them on a social level.  After my internship, I saw HCVT as a place that I would enjoy coming to work every day and happily accepted a full-time offer. 

Coming straight out of college, I didn't realize how great HCVT was until I continued working full-time. I worked as a tax staff for about a year when I became curious about the audit practice and wanted a change of pace.  I remember sending an email to one of our audit partners and meeting just a few hours later to discuss the possibility of a transfer. Although I wasn't sure of what I wanted and was scared to commit to such a drastic change, I had great mentors who took the time to share their personal experiences and advice with me. I sincerely appreciated the flexibility that I was given and felt like everyone involved had my best interests at heart.

Looking back, I'm amazed at how much I've grown personally and professionally in such a short amount of time.  Although our training department does a wonderful job organizing in-house and offsite training for us, I feel like I learn the most when I'm working on an engagement.   From planning to fieldwork to compiling financials, I have gained such valuable experiences from working as a team and seeing these engagements from start to finish.   I am constantly learning and continuing to develop stronger relationships with our clients and my co-workers.  I feel like we really work as a team to meet our deadlines and provide quality services to our clients. And it's not all about busy seasons, long hours, and stressful deadlines; HCVT definitely tries to reward its employees for their hard work and dedication by hosting social events throughout the year.  My personal favorite is our annual Raises & Promotions Celebration, during which the entire firm gets together to celebrate the accomplishments of the firm and all of its employees.  

Overall, I feel that HCVT is a firm that values personal development at all levels, and I have had a wonderful experience since my first day as an intern.”       

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