M.S. in Accounting 2010, Tax Consulting Track
Undergrad: B.S. in Commerce 2009, University of Virginia
After: Tax Staff, Diversified Staff Group at EY (Charlotte, NC)
Now: Tax Senior Manager, International Tax & Private Client Services (Zürich, Switzerland)
The M.S. in Accounting at the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce emphasizes the importance of a comprehensive global curriculum. It teaches its students to look at the world from a global perspective while emphasizing high performing teams and cross-cultural business communication skills. We recently caught up with alumna Rebecca Cahoon who graduated from the Tax Consulting Track in 2010. Rebecca is currently a Tax Senior Manager with EY’s Private Client Services (PCS) group in Zürich, Switzerland.
Rebecca highlighted her “Tax Research” course as the most relevant class to her profession. In this course, students look at various case studies to help identify tax issues, locate and interpret relevant authority, and professionally communicate their findings. Rebecca still refers back to this class as her current work involves a lot of tax research and analysis.
She recently began a two-year assignment in Zürich, Switzerland. Prior to Zürich, Rebecca had an opportunity to participate in a short-term assignment abroad in São Paulo, Brazil. As a Senior Tax Accountant, she helped establish the PCS group in South America. Today, she works with multinational clients whose tax issues span across several jurisdictions. Her work in Zürich involves consulting on cross-border issues related to U.S. taxation, such as families abroad who have businesses in the U.S. Rebecca has enjoyed the work so far as she gains more experience in the consulting world.
Rebecca joined EY as Tax Staff in the Diversified Staff Group (DSG) after completing her M.S. in Accounting at UVA. Two years later, she chose to specialize in the Private Client Services (PCS) group because it fit her skill set and interests. During her time at UVA, Rebecca volunteered as an income assistant (VITA), providing free tax return preparation to low-income individuals and families through Madison House. She credits her experience helping individuals and families save money to her interest in joining EY’s PCS group.
Overall, Rebecca continues to benefit from her McIntire education in her career. “The diversity of people and perspectives really helped me bring the skills and expertise needed to work across borders. One of my key takeaways from McIntire was working in teams and understanding different needs. The emphasis on teamwork and collaborative nature of the M.S. in Accounting program gave me the skills required to solve complex issues in an international setting.”