Student smiling with a tablet in front of her

ashley klopfenstein ’20

Degree: BA-Public Accounting (Marietta); BA-Finance (Marietta)
Occupation: National Tax Office Staff (Plante Moran)
Location: Chicago, Illinois

Speaking with current students and sharing her experiences is important to Ashley Klopfenstein ’20. That’s because when she was an undergraduate at Marietta, Ashley connected with two alumni who spoke about their experiences — and it made a big impression.

If it wasn't for a member of The Long Blue Line for helping me understand what an amazing company this is to work for, I'm not even sure I'd be doing this type of work.

- ashley klopfenstein ’20, National tax office staff

“I wasn’t really interested in Public Accounting but hearing each of them speak about their experiences is what pushed me toward it,” Ashley says. “I went back to Professor (Grace) Johnson and told her I was interested in pursuing an internship and she connected me with other alumni; and the alumni I met on campus helped push my résumé through the recommendation process.”

She earned the internship with Plante Moran in Chicago and made such an impression that she had a full-time job offer when she returned in the fall of her senior year.

“During my interview, they talked a lot about work-life balance, and I was a little apprehensive because I wasn’t sure if I should believe it,” Ashley says. “I enjoyed my internship and I liked what I was hearing, but I talked to some other alumni who work at Plante Moran, and they told me what I was hearing in the interview was true.”

Following her first year with the company, Ashley is enjoying the work as a National Tax Office Staff member, as well as the social aspects of living in Chicago.

“There is so much stuff to do in Chicago. I especially love all the great places to eat,” she says. “I didn’t have any connections to Chicago before I moved here, but it’s a great city.”

Ashley splits her time between working on tax returns and doing consulting work both internally and externally.

“It’s going very well,” she says. “If it wasn’t for a member of The Long Blue Line for helping me understand what an amazing company this is to work for, I’m not even sure I’d be doing this type of work. That is one of the amazing things about Marietta College. Alumni will help. Now I am always telling my former faculty members and the Career Center if there is anything I can do to help, I’m here for them.”

Ashley remains in close contact with Professor Johnson, and both participated in a virtual meeting with other alumni to discuss career options in accounting.

“Professor Johnson takes a really active role in helping students find jobs and internships,” Ashley says. “I have told her if she has students who are interested in Plante Moran, I am here to answer questions or do what I can to help them.”

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