Our Stories

Organizing Her Career

MAcc provides foundation for forensic accounting

Sydney Parker
Audit Assistant, Deloitte

Vanderbilt MAcc Assurance 2022

Besides a love for numbers, Sydney Parker likes organizing things. “I’m the person,” she confesses, “who takes all the dishes out of the cabinets and puts them back more organized as a stress-relieving activity.” So perhaps it was inevitable, she thinks in hindsight, that she would pursue an accounting career, which would enable her to follow both passions with door-opening opportunities to work in locations around the world.

Specifically, Sydney aspires to a career in forensic accounting with the FBI or other U.S. government agency. For that, she wanted to build a strong foundation in the field and obtain the exposure that a Big Four accounting firm could offer. The Vanderbilt MAcc—as attested by several alumni from her undergraduate school (Furman University) who went through the program—could be an excellent bridge to her goal.

What Sydney says she has realized in hindsight, after completing her degree and landing a Big Four job near her family in Raleigh, North Carolina: “The power of Vanderbilt is the people. My classmates are lifelong friends who have facilitated my learning and development as a professional. The faculty have unique life experiences and unique teaching styles that will be so helpful as I enter the workforce and work with different management styles.

“The alumni supported me in my job search and created such a community. Our shared experiences allowed me to have topics for interviews as well as role models, displaying all the achievements that are possible with a Vanderbilt degree, which was inspiring.

“Our program coordinator, Emily O’Dell, was always there to answer questions, support us when we needed a hand, and celebrate us in ways in which we always felt prioritized and that we mattered. As new entrants into the business world, that feeling was impactful.”

Fun Fact: In her free time, Sydney enjoys rock climbing, pickup soccer, and trying new restaurants.

The power of Vanderbilt is the people.