By Troy Wilde
January 10, 2017
Tempe, AZ – Carolina Aguirre plans to spend her career immersed in numbers.
Carolina, who’s working toward becoming a Certified Public Account, explains, “I’m a numbers person and I like when you have numbers, and you can make sense of them. The numbers help you track finances and make sure that everything is set up the way it’s supposed to be. So that’s what I like the most, just making sense of everything. After graduation I plan on going into possibly financing and investing, and I would also consider the opportunity of working at an accounting firm. I’m on track to sit for the CPA exam around my college graduation date.”
Carolina says her passion for accounting goes back to high school, “I got interested in accounting in high school by taking courses and speaking to my instructor there, and she really encouraged me to try it and I’ve liked it ever since.”
Carolina, age 20, was born and raised in Phoenix, and graduated from Alhambra High School. She’s currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Accounting at Arizona State University.
Carolina says college is helping her in many ways, “I think that I’m growing and developing as a student and hopefully into a future leader in my community. I come from a very minority-filled community, so college has definitely expanded my mind and other experiences, which I don’t think I would have had without college. College has really opened my eyes to different people and different ideas, and I’ve really enjoyed it.”
Carolina adds that her family has been very helpful:
“My family is super supportive and they want me to reach all of my goals. They are my support group and they continually encourage me not to stop, or give up. Outside of school there are other priorities and distractions, but just having that great support group has helped me so much in college.”
Beyond the books, Carolina has completed an internship with the Arizona Office of the Auditor General, “It was a lot of fun because accounting is accounting, but auditing is a little bit different. So I was able to go in and get my feet wet in something that was apart from accounting, and that was really interesting and I learned so much. I got to work on NAU’s audit as well as Coconino Community College’s audit. It was a great experience to work with real auditors who have already gone through college and got their CPA. It was also an opportunity to get some good advice for my career moving forward.”
In addition to her studies, Carolina has a job with the American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education, “What we focus on is giving students a platform, to not only attain college degrees but go beyond that. So far as my job, I help out in planning their annual conference, and every year I arrange their travel and hotel arrangements, and I’m in charge of the program for the college itself.”
Carolina is also part of the Hispanic Business Students Association at ASU, “The club is open to everyone, but we do focus primarily on Latino students, and Latino business students. We do a lot of community service and volunteering, and we also do projects that will help us on working on our resume skills, professionalism, and stuff like that.”
Carolina Aguirre is among the hundreds of high potential students from low income circumstances who have earned a scholarship from College Success Arizona, which provides up to six-thousand dollars per year for educational expenses, “One of my biggest fears going into college was not knowing how I was going to pay for it. Getting a scholarship from College Success Arizona has definitely made the college experience better because it’s one less worry, and it gives me more to time focus on studies. So, I think the financial assistance is absolutely incredible, and I am so grateful for it, because without it I don’t know that I would even be continuing college.”
Scholarship recipients also receive specialized mentoring services from a team of highly skilled ‘Success Advisers.” Matt Sotelo is Carolina’s success adviser, “Matt is a really great mentor to have, because we’ve been able to bond and he’s relatable. I can relate to him because he also went through college, and we have a similar background. So, I think that having a mentor you can relate to is really, really helpful.”
Carolina has some advice for middle and high school students considering college, “I think the best advice that I can offer is to never give up. Going to college may seem difficult and overwhelming, and you may be considering every excuse not to go, but college is an experience that everyone should hope to have. As a business student, I can see that more than ever a college degree is something that we all need to have in the workforce.”