Intern: Logan Cunningham '20
Title: Associate Intern
Place of Internship: CBRE Group, Inc.
How did you find out about your internship?
I happened upon CBRE’s job posting when I was browsing through the job postings on Handshake.
What were your responsibilities at your internship?
CBRE is a large fortune 500 company that is in the business of commercial real estate services and investments. When I arrived, I was transitioned five properties from four of the other accountants that I was working with. My responsibility for these properties included check runs, month end reports, lease edits, investor distributions, communications with the Real Estate Management (REM) team, and additional situations as they arose. Check runs were performed weekly and involved using CBRE’s inhouse workflow tools to pay the various invoices that arrived in the system for any particular property, then ensuring these properties had enough money in their accounts to pay the invoices. Investor distribution on the other hand, did not happen nearly as often, yet I completed one in my time at CBRE. It involved wiring cash to the investors of a property but making sure that we did not give too much of the cash that we were using to pay their bills. Lease edits were a bit more common, but not by much. These are filled out by the REM team, reviewed, and approved by the accountant on the property.
This is along with a group presentation competition that we were tasked to complete by the end of the internship. This was because we had the opportunity to give this presentation to some of the directors and controllers during the last week of the internship. These directors and controllers would watch the three groups of interns’ present and decide which group was able to best present their topic. The topic of the presentation was we were to pretend we were recruiters creating a presentation that we were going to give at a job fair about CBRE. This topic involved explaining what CBRE all is about, what they do, and briefly explaining the many different departments that make up CBRE. Once the time came to give the presentation, I was incredibly nervous, but feeling prepared after practicing for months. Our groups hard work paid off because we were voted the best presentation! This moment was not only exciting, but it also really validated the growth I had made over the last few months.
What was the most beneficial aspect of your experience?
The most beneficial part of my internship was the real-world experience that I was able to get every single day when going into work. There was not a day that I went into the office that I did not learn something new. Some of the things included plenty of Excel and Adobe shortcuts, how to prioritize twelve hours of work into an eight-hour workday, and the value of great communication skills. The amount of emails, instant messages, phone calls, and conversations that I had with my coworkers are uncountable. These interactions all really highlighted the importance of a team player. Overall, the most beneficial aspect of the internship was the entire experience itself because of how much I was able to learn throughout the process.
What was the most surprising thing you experienced or learned during your internship?
I was surprised to see how technologically advanced the accounting world is becoming. It is one thing to hear about a topic, but it is completely different to experience it first-hand. CBRE has dozens of software’s that are used for workflow efficiency, databases, storage, filling out forms, etc. Many of these software’s were developed in house by former accountants themselves. It was surprising and exciting to be exposed to what the future may have in store for me.
How can you apply what you experienced at your internship in the future?
I plan on taking my internship experience and transitioning that to my search for a full-time position after graduation. The business connections I was able to make will help to carry me towards my goal of a full time job. I also use the knowledge from my internship in the classes I am taking this semester.
What advice would you offer to future students interested in this experience?
My best words of advice would be to put yourself out there. If you have doubts about applying for an internship for whatever reason, apply anyway. On the job learning is one of the best ways to prepare for your years after graduation and interning is a great way to do it.