Jocelyn Yeager answered the question without hesitation.
“My goal is to become a forensic accountant for the FBI,” she said firmly, when asked what her career ambitions are. Yes, the Lakeland College junior definitely knows what she wants to do, and she’s going after it full throttle.
This summer, Yeager enjoyed an exciting paid internship at Insight Forensic Accountants, a company with offices in Chicago, Minneapolis, Denver and Milwaukee. She worked more than 400 hours at Insight’s Milwaukee branch, which is located in suburban New Berlin.
“I loved it,” she said. “It was a fantastic experience, and I realize how fortunate I am to have worked there. As time went on, they gave me more and more responsibility.”
Yeager’s tasks included everything from data entry to research to the evaluation of business losses. One case she worked on heavily involved evaluating the cause of and financial losses affiliated with a collapsed building. The internship went so well, she was asked to work there during Christmas break and possibly again next summer.
Forensic accounting is a fast-growing profession, especially given the rise of credit card and online fraud, in addition to employee dishonesty. Lakeland College has been one of the state’s higher education leaders in this important discipline of accounting, and annually hosts a forensic accounting competition involving nearly 20 Wisconsin high schools.
“Forensic accounting is exciting, and I love everything about it,” said Yeager, who is double majoring in accounting and business (with a fraud emphasis) with a minor in computer science.
Despite her intense academic focus, Yeager is an exceptionally versatile, well-rounded member of Lakeland’s community. She’s a shortstop and catcher on the Muskies’ softball team, serves as co-vice president of the accounting club and is a business senator on Lakeland’s Student Government Association.
She teamed up with Jessica Lambrecht, Lakeland’s director of career services, to form the Future Professionals Network (FPN), an on-campus club designed to help students network and grow into polished graduates.
“It’s open to business and non-business majors alike,” she says of FPN. “Right now we’ve got about eight or nine core members but we hope to grow. This year we’re planning a job fair.”
Yeager loves how her instructors support and push her, enjoys the family atmosphere head softball coach Haley Dreyer fosters and appreciates Lambrecht for letting her know about the internship with Insight.
“She said, ‘Hey Jocelyn, I’ve got something for you!’” Yeager recalls. “Then (Assistant Professor of Accounting) Brett Killion told us in class, ‘You really should apply for this.’”
Shortly after her formal interview with Insight, Yeager was in Florida for the softball team’s annual early-spring tournament when she got the call between games. She had landed the internship.
“I was freaking out,” she said. “I called my mom, but couldn’t reach her right away, so I called my boyfriend. My mom called me right back and told me we’d have to go clothes shopping when I returned home so I’d have enough professional outfits. They were both very excited for me.”