FSB accountancy prof creates virtual training sessions for KPMG interns

Brian Ballou during one of his KPMG training videos

Already a familiar face around the Farmer School of Business, accountancy professor Brian Ballou became a familiar face for KPMG interns in the United States this summer as he led them through parts of their virtual training sessions.

After he was asked to participate by KPMG, Ballou and Auburn professor emeritus Rick Tabor developed and recorded portions of the KPMG Virtual Internship Experience in June. “I was able to drive down to Auburn, stay in Rick’s house, and we were able to record in his church’s basement recording studio,” Ballou recalled. “So we were able to quarantine and develop materials in his house and then record in the church at night.”

What we were able to do is convey some of the leading skills and abilities that accountants need to be successful in today’s environment. We used publicly-available information to convey different areas of knowledge and expertise that should be useful to them in public accounting,” Ballou explained. “So they can get a sense of how things work in public accounting and then what they might want to work on while they're still in school before they go back to the firm.”

Ballou has been working with KPMG interns for a number of years. “In a normal summer, we'll go around to a number of offices and do workshops for interns on how to think about clients from a risk-based perspective,” Ballou said. “This year, obviously, we couldn't do that.”