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The Shareholder Online The alumni magazine of Auburn University’s Raymond J. Harbert College of Business

Auburn student learns stylish side of accounting

a - Adlich AU sign

Choosing the right intern is invaluable because, “it gives you the chance to essentially test-drive a potential new recruit and it gives that new recruit the chance to see the company from the inside.” That’s the philosophy of J.Crew Chief Financial Officer and 1992 Auburn University graduate Stuart Haselden.

It’s even better when that recruit comes from your alma mater.

Elizabeth Adlich, a senior in the School of Accountancy at Harbert College, spent the summer at J.Crew’s headquarters in New York City – briefly trading Toomer’s Corner for Times Square.

Stuart Haselden, JCrew CFO, and Auburn School of Accountancy senior Elizabeth Adlich.

Stuart Haselden, JCrew CFO, and Auburn School of Accountancy senior Elizabeth Adlich.

“It was great to have a corporate Auburn connection in NYC. Stuart was very helpful in my transition into my role at J.Crew,” said Adlich, a Huntsville native. “Stuart checked in regularly to see how things were going. It was cool to be working just a few feet away from an Auburn alum, and I really enjoyed getting to see what he deals with day to day.”

Haselden, who completed his undergraduate degree in political science at Auburn, served four years in the U.S. Army before earning his MBA from Tulane. He said finding an intern from Auburn “made sense.”

His fondness for Auburn, coupled with his travel to campus for other matters, helped advance the hiring process. “I’m of the opinion that top students at major universities across the country are going to be top students anywhere. You might as well take a look at a school like Auburn.”

Adlich’s summer was a busy one.

“I helped with the corporate expenses associated with fashion week travel, international store openings, style guide photo shoots, social media advertising, and spreads in all of the large fashion magazines,” she said. “I was also exposed to some smaller projects dealing with international/domestic tax, wholesale sales, and the leases for some exciting new store openings.

“One of my favorite projects was helping with the invoices from the modeling agencies for the June style guide. It was amazing to see how much time, money and effort goes into small details that I don’t always notice as a consumer.”

Adlich initially believed her summer at J.Crew would be consumed with accounting. “I learned so much about every aspect of the business; it is fascinating to see everything that goes into getting that one shirt to the store and then into someone’s shopping bad,” she said. “I had the opportunity to meet with people from all departments and even spent time in the store.

“This exposure to a completely different industry makes me a stronger candidate for positions in the future. I enjoyed learning more about how the entire business operates and then seeing those aspects reflected in the financials.”

When asked how her School of Accountancy education helped her internship, she noted she was able to “talk the talk.”

“It is great to understand the concepts behind what I am doing aside from just the numbers,” she said. “My professors have done a wonderful job teaching me about why things are doing and not just how to do them.”

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