Catherine Banks

Catherine Banks

Director, EY Foundation&Academic Resource Center


EY

Seattle, WA USA


I've found that it is important to always stay curious and constantly seek out new knowledge.

Milestones

My road in life has taken me all over.
I decided to try an accounting class in high school and really enjoyed it. I thought this might be a career to explore.
When applying for college, I was fortunate to receive a lot of scholarships, but none that would cover my financial need so I changed my plans to attend a community college.
I transferred into the University of Illinois after community college and was lucky to learn much more about the extensive number of career options for accounting. I started building my network.
I was able to start my career in audit at EY straight out of college and spent 12 years doing this exciting work. This led me to becoming involved with our hiring and interaction with universities.
Because of my background as an auditor and with interest in education and recruiting, I was able to lead recruiting efforts for the firm regionally and became involved with academics.
I became involved with the EY Foundation and led efforts to develop free resources for the academic community on leading-edge issues impacting the accounting and auditing profession.
I began supporting the finance and program operations of the EY Foundation, learning more about non-profits and leveraging my accounting and auditing background.

Education

High School
Stephen Decatur High School
Bachelor
Accounting
University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

Career

Director, EY Foundation&Academic Resource Center

I develop academic resources and support charitable programs for higher ed on behalf of the accounting profession

Career Roadmap

Roadmap
My work combines:
My work combines:
Business
Non-Profit Organizations
Helping People

Day to Day

Each day for me is a new adventure and full of variety! I lead multiple teams of diverse individuals so I spend a lot of time discussing strategy, making decisions, and providing guidance. There is a large focus on quality in my role so I am always focused on making sure that our processes, data and systems are the best they can be to support the programs that I help manage. I also spend a lot of time building relationships, within my organization and externally with the academic community.

Skills & Qualities Beyond School

I have found that I have never stopped learning since I started my career and the need to invest in continual learning has never been more important! I spend a lot of my time now learning and applying emerging technologies to make work easier and better. It is so fun but is also challenging! I've found that it is important to always stay curious and constantly seek out new knowledge.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for high school students

I think this can start with education by taking courses to try out potential interest so you can understand more about the subject matter to start. Researching today is also so easy so I'd suggest finding online resources to gain more insights and to make connections with people in the profession.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:

undergrad
Bachelor
Accounting

Hurdles

The Noise I Shed

From Society in General:

"This is a very demanding career path and it would be challenging to successfully have a career and a family."