Senior Class Representative to Join Accounting Profession
(Released: May 17, 2002)
By Richard Veilleux, Office of University Communications
STORRS, Conn. -- Before the collapse of Enron and the associated
tainting of consulting firm Arthur Andersen, accounting major and
STAMFORD resident Irene Choi had written honesty and truthfulness
into her resume.
"My career goal is to be an honest and truthful certified
public accountant," says Choi, who graduates May 18 with
honors, and will speak as a senior class representative during the
morning Commencement exercises at the University of
Her goals and resume so impressed the professionals at
PriceWaterhouse-Coopers that they signed her up a full year in
advance, to be a staff accountant in the company's Stamford
Choi, who will stay on at UConn to pursue a master's degree
in accounting come fall, will join the
prestigious accounting firm next summer. Her concentration is
While pursuing her master's degree, Choi has been offered an
assistantship in the accounting department to support a technology
push on WebCT, a web-based product that allows faculty to use the
Internet to offer and/or supplement courses.
"Accounting is a special profession with the moral
standards almost as high as those of doctors and lawyers,"
says Choi, who credits her accounting professors for their
dedication to high standards, "My professors are hardworking
and dedicated. They not only teach us knowledge, but how to become
a better person."
A native of Hong Kong, Choi came to the United States in 1996 as
a teenager with her parents and younger brother William, also a
UConn student. She spoke no English, found school a terrifying
experience and greatly missed her friends back in Hong Kong.
"I was so lost," says Choi. "When I looked at a
textbook, I didn't know anything in it."
She sees those difficult days now as a life-altering experience
that has made her a stronger person.
"When we came to the United States, everything changed for
me, especially the culture," she says, "and I needed a
great deal of energy to get through it."
The energy has stayed with Choi from her initial two years at
the Stamford campus to the last two at Storrs, where she's
received many awards, both inside and outside the University,
including the Connecticut Society of Certified Public
Accountants' Outstanding Student Award, given to the graduating
accounting student with the highest GPA; the Outstanding Student
Contribution Award from the University's Accounting Department;
and the University's Edward Victor Gant Scholarship. Choi also
was a Babbidge Scholar for three years. Babbidge Scholars are those
who attain a grade-point average of 4.0 for two consecutive
semesters in a calendar year.
In April, she was one of a handful of UConn students honored
during a ceremony at the State Capitol for her outstanding academic
achievements and extracurricular activities.
Choi has been active on the Storrs campus as a member of Beta
Alpha Psi, the National Honorary Accounting Business Society and
Beta Gamma Sigma, the National Honorary Business Society. She has
already put her tax acumen to work as a volunteer for the Volunteer
Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, which helps local residents
and international students with their taxes.
Says Choi: "I love to help."
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