"Covers the campus like the magnolias"

Old Gold & Black

'Covers the campus like the magnolias'
"Covers the campus like the magnolias"

Old Gold & Black

"Covers the campus like the magnolias"

Old Gold & Black

Accountancy: Gia Marino

(Courtesy of Gia Marino)

Wanting to leave her home state of New Jersey for a Southern college, Gia Marino was drawn to Wake Forest by its small school feel and gorgeous campus. She still felt like a little kid when she stepped onto campus as a freshman. Reflecting now as a senior, tearing up a bit in the process, Marino is equally nostalgic, although thrilled, for her next chapter. 

Despite initially intending to major in biology, Marino found her footing in her sophomore year after being accepted into the Wake Forest University School of Business as a finance major. Ultimately, excelling in Intro to Accounting is what led her to finally switch to a major in accountancy.

“I loved Intro to Accounting,” Marino said. “Everyone hates it, but I really liked it, and it kind of came naturally to me.”

Marino continued to love her accounting classes, even those notorious for their difficulty, standing out amongst her classmates. In 2022 and 2023, Marino was awarded the merit-based John Belk Stevens scholarship by the business school.

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Although Marino’s journey to accountancy was a long one, it’s one defined by strong relationships. Whether that’s cramming for tests with classmates in the Farrell Hall lobby or getting to know her professors, Marino has found a sense of community in the business school.

“The business school has really taught me how important it is to focus on your relationships with people and how much you can learn from other people,” she said. 

As co-chair of Wake Forest’s Undergraduate Business Student Council, Marino organizes various panels and projects catered to undergraduate business students as well as freshmen hoping to get involved. For instance, to make peer mentorship more accessible, Marino proposed and kickstarted Biz Buds, a program that matches sophomores new to the business school with upperclassmen who study the same major and have similar interests.

“We’re the bridge between the students and the business school and the faculty there,” she said, “and [we] just try to make the experience better overall.”

Marino herself is a testament to the benefit that events put on by the business school can have. She explains that a consulting panel she attended her sophomore year is what made her want to pursue a career in consulting.

After graduation, Marino will join the “Big Four” accounting firm Ernst & Young as a risk consultant in New York City. In addition to working, she plans to earn her Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license over the next few years.

“I’m so excited to start working,” Marino said. “I feel like I’m going to learn so much on the job … The scary part is the new things and the exciting part is the new things.” 

Despite the uncertainty that comes with adjusting to a new city and new job, Marino is confident that she can handle the pressure. While the concrete jungle is a far cry from Mother So Dear’s beautiful campus, she is glad to be taking a more important piece of Wake Forest with her: the community — as several of her fellow seniors will be living in New York, as well. 

“I don’t want to sound melancholy, but absorb every second of [Wake Forest],” Marino said. “ … Everyone talks about how it’s the people at [Wake Forest], and that [has been] so clear over these four years.”

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About the Contributor
Alex Keating
Alex Keating, Copy Chief
Alex is a freshman from Manhattan Beach, Calif. intending to major in business and enterprise management and minor in entrepreneurship. Outside of the OGB, she is also a member of the Delta Zeta sorority. In her free time, you can find her playing tennis, trying new restaurants and spin cycling.

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