News Archive

2021 Academic Advisor Award – Boz Bostrom

Trnka’s Award Headlines Accounting and Finance Department Faculty Recognition

BenThe Academic Affairs office at CSB/SJU annually recognizes faculty for their achievements and contributions to the Saint Ben’s and Saint John’s community. This year, four faculty members from the Accounting and Finance Department received awards or recognition.

Ben Trnka was named CSB/SJU’s Faculty Academic Advisor of the Year. Ben was nominated for this award by his student advisees – he formally advises about 50 of our students and serves as an informal advisor and mentor to many more. Ben also was recognized for receiving his Becoming Community Practitioner Certificate, a professional development program focused on inclusive practices.

Wei Huang received tenure and was promoted to associate professor. Wei is the department’s leading expert in the area of corporate finance and students rave about her brilliance, positive energy, and kindness.

Mary Jepperson was appointed as both the Ralph Gross Chair in Business and the new chair of the Global Business Leadership (GBUS) Department. Mary previously served as the chair of the Accounting and Finance Department for twelve years and looks forward to leading GBUS efforts in revising their curriculum.

Boz Bostrom was promoted to professor. Boz joined the department as an assistant professor in 2004 and received tenure and promotion to associate professor in 2011.

Accounting and Finance Department Awards nearly $80,000 in scholarships to 35 students!

We are pleased to announce that 35 sophomore and junior accounting/finance students recently were awarded scholarships totaling $79,300. Thank you to the generous alumni and organizations for their contributions, and great job to our students in achieving the scholarships!

Below is a listing of the scholarships and recipients.

KPMG Scholarships:
  • Megan Anderson
  • Jaiden McCollum
  • Danielle Heinen
  • Grace Lee
  • Abbey Estep
  • Maggie Gillis
Professor Emeritus Thomas J. Murray Endowment Fund Scholarships:
  • Brady Sabolik
  • Avery Bentrott
  • Simeon Farquharson
  • Trayias Bowe
  • Logan Larson
EY Scholarships:
  • Steph Hurrle
  • Hailey Sabin
  • Annika Rzeszutek
  • Kelly Klingelhutz
CSB Accounting and Finance Scholarship:
  • Sarah Thommes
  • Reiley Huntoon
  • Haley Hubbard
John P. Fitzgerald Memorial Scholarships:
  • Grant Fuchs
  • Brogan Hayden
  • Brandon Kramer
Henderson Scholarships:
  • Madison Leyse
  • Julia Pias
Construction Financial Management Association Scholarship:
  • Peter Laird
  • Erika Moehring
Minnesota Society of CPAs Scholarships:
  • Jacob Thorsten
  • Eric Kieser
  • Hannah Santiago
Deloitte Scholarship:
  • Maria Van Hove
Charles E. Merrill Scholarship:
  • Michael Bloss
Mid-State Chapter of Minnesota Society of CPAs Scholarships:
  • Aaron Liestman
  • Skylar Gast
  • Emily Winkels
  • Jake Binley
  • Dan Baumert

Number’s Night a Smashing Success!

On February 6, 2020, Saint Ben’s and Saint John’s hosted the annual Number’s Night recruiting event. 328 students representing 25 majors attended the event, which was held in the Great Hall and the Founders Room on Saint John’s Campus.

Students were first invited to participate in a session on effective networking before two hours of networking with 118 representatives from 51 companies. At the close of the networking session the students were excused and the reps, many alumni, enjoyed reconnecting over snacks and cold beverages.

Mark your calendars for next year’s Number’s Night – February 4, 2021!

The following companies attended the event:


Dorsey & Whitney LLP


Ameriprise Financial


RBC Wealth Management

Auto-Owners Insurance Company  


Redpath and Company

Baker Tilly

Federated Insurance

Robert Half


Grant Thornton


Benedictine Volunteer Corps

Jack Link's Beef Jerky

Schlenner Wenner & Co.



Securian Financial

Best Buy

Loup Ventures

Specialty Mfg

Boston Scientific

Mahoney, Ulbrich, Christiansen & Russ

Stearns Bank



Target Corporation

Capitol One

Morgan Stanley



National Info. Solutions Coop. NISC  

Tennant Company

Central Minnesota Credit Union  

Northstar Capital

Thrivent Financial


Northwestern Mutual

Travelers Insurance


Opportunity International

U.S. Bank


Piper Sandler

UnitedHealth Group


Prudential Financial

Wells Fargo

Meet the TAs!

Six students will be serving as TAs and tutors this academic year for the Accounting and Finance Department. Each student works a few daytime shifts, helping professors with class preparation, special events, and other projects. Most TAs work one evening per week as a tutor in our homework lab, which is open from 7-9pm Sunday through Thursday nights. The department actively seeks out TAs who are excellent in the classroom, strong communicators, and active on campus. The TAs have an average GPA of over 3.90 and all six of them have either internships or full-time jobs lined up.

Jake Thorsten is a junior from Foley, Minnesota. He is active on campus in many intramural sports. This coming spring, he will be working as an intern in KPMG’s Tax Department. “I like accounting because I am a pretty detail-oriented guy, and I look forward to the opportunity to hang out on Simons 2 and work with the professors.”

Kristen Rezac is a junior from Yankton, South Dakota. She is involved in intramural sports and also works in the CSB/SJU Academic Advising office. This spring, she will be studying abroad in South Africa and next summer she will be interning with Deloitte’s audit practice. “My professors are very approachable and talked me into an accounting major. I am looking forward to helping out other students.”

Sam Ruzynski is a senior from Circle Pines, Minnesota, and is a starter on the lacrosse team. This summer, he had perhaps the “coolest” internship of any of our accounting/finance students - he was a part of Deloitte’s global internship program where he and other top interns from around the world spent a month in Australia! He will start work for Deloitte full time in the fall of 2020 as an auditor. “I chose accounting because it was my favorite of the courses I took in my first year. I enjoy tutoring in the evenings, as I really like helping other students.”

Rachel Swisher is a senior from Plymouth, Minnesota. She is also a board member with Enactus. This year, she completed internships with RSM and EY, and will be working as an auditor with EY after graduation. “I chose accounting because of the great employment opportunities.” And we think she is joking when she added, “I think my favorite part of being a TA is making copies.”

Dan Floeder is a senior from Rosemount, Minnesota. Dan enjoys fishing and participating on campus in intramurals. He completed an internship with CliftonLarsonAllen and will begin working in their Minneapolis office after graduation. “I find accounting to be very applicable – the skills I learn are transferable to other areas of life. I like being a TA as I enjoy the opportunity to mentor younger students.”

Sam Cruz is a senior from Pelican Rapids, Minnesota. He participates in both the varsity cross country and track teams. Already this year, he has completed internships for Schlenner Wenner and CliftonLarsonAllen (CLA). He will be working in CLA’s St. Cloud office after graduation. “Honestly, I kind of stumbled into accounting, almost like a lucky guess. I took a class, did well, and stuck with it. I enjoy working as a tutor and meeting new students.”

Students Line-Up Internships Early

August 2019

A concern among many college students (and their parents!) is whether they will be able to find a job upon graduation. A key stepping stone to landing that job is to first secure an internship. Many students spend time during their junior years building their resume, networking, and interviewing. But for 26 rising junior accounting majors at St. Ben’s and St. John’s, that worry is gone – they have already locked-up internships. What’s even better is that the vast majority of these internships will lead to full time job offers at around $55,000 per year, with a $5,000 bonus upon passing the CPA exam.

The Big 4 accounting firms are Deloitte, EY, KPMG, and PwC, and all 4 of these firms recruit on campus at CSB/SJU. Only two other colleges in the state can make that claim. At least two rising juniors will be interning at each of the Big 4 firms. At least two students will also be interning at each of Grant Thornton and CliftonLarsonAllen (CLA), which are top 10 CPA firms in the US. We asked seven of these students why they chose the firm they did.

Abbey Estep chose CLA. “Their office in Minneapolis is huge, but I still felt very connected with the people - they didn’t make me feel like a number!”

Maggie Gillis will be interning at PwC and also participating in Deloitte’s Premier Students Program (PSP). “Ultimately what set PwC apart was the effort I felt like they put in to recruiting me during their two-day summer leadership program. I was paired up with a buddy who met me for lunch before the program, then was there with me to go through basically every moment of the program. The effort I saw from the recruiters and current PwC employees to spend time with us really stood out to me and I felt comfortable choosing PwC for my internship knowing that going to work would be fun every day with these people.”

Hailey Sabin also chose PwC and said, “I fit in the most with their people and culture. The benefits they offer are great, but what was more important for me was finding the people who I would enjoy working with every day. The people I met from PwC were really fun and easy to talk to, and I can see myself making some great friends there and having fun at work.

Andrew Newinski will be interning in Deloitte’s tax department, “The reason I chose Deloitte was because of the great outreach and connection with Deloitte’s tax professionals, along with Deloitte’s welcoming culture.”

Danielle Heinen will have a busy 2019! She will be interning in KPMG’s audit practice in January and February before returning to campus for the second half of the semester. Then, she will be interning over the summer with CLA in St Cloud. “I chose the firms I did due to the great people I met during my interview processes. I also chose my internships based on the types of experiences I felt would set me up for a successful career.”

Eric Kieser will also be doing two internships in 2019 – during busy season he will be working on both audit and tax projects in Lurie’s Entrepreneurial Services Group, and then in the summer he will be interning in Grant Thornton’s tax practice. Eric noted, “When I began searching for internships in the tax field, I knew I wanted to be with a firm that would push my knowledge and help me explore career options. Grant Thornton has worldwide connections and encourages all its people to be passionate in their work. As I continued my search for career opportunities, I realized I wanted an internship that would give me an overall view of how businesses function. The Entrepreneurial Services Group at Lurie offers the perfect opportunity to work with a small group of professionals while providing services essential to the growth of companies across many industries.”

Kelley Klingelhutz will be interning in EY’s Financial Services Office. “I chose EY because after attending various recruiting events with their team members I just felt like I really connected with the people and culture at EY. So many people from EY reached out or followed up with me and that really made me feel valued.”

Bennies and Johnnies clearly value connections – not just on campus but in their work experiences as well!