Student Stories: Alexandria Schweikle

Alexandria Schweikle

Major: Accounting

When she was young, Alexandria Schweikle wanted to be a lawyer and kept this dream all the way through her junior year of high school.

“As I learned more about being a lawyer, I realized that it did not exactly line up with the lifestyle I envisioned for myself in the future,” she said. “I took a personality and career test, and the results told me the career I was best fit for was accounting. I had always liked and excelled at math, so this made sense. As I began researching the specifics of occupations in both accounting and finance, I realized that they sounded like the perfect fields for me.” 

Schweikle selected College of DuPage after being named a Presidential Scholar, which provides full tuition to high-achieving students. This allowed her to focus on academics and activities, which included service learning opportunities with the Glen Ellyn Children’s Resource Center and COD’s Fuel Pantry. She also was a member of Phi Theta Kappa and involved in Alpha Mu Gamma, the foreign language honors society, first as vice president and then as president. Because of her work, she was invited to speak at the National Alpha Mu Gamma Conference about events she had organized.

COD Honors Program

As a member of the Honors Program, Schweikle created a project about the economic and political situation in Venezuela. She presented it at the Honors Council of the Illinois Region Spring Student Symposium, at the Upper Midwest Regional Honors Conference and the COD Library Student Research Symposium.

“I formulated my own research question and then found four academic articles to help complete my presentation. Two were written in English and two were written in Spanish,” she said. “While this assignment was mainly intended to earn honors credit in my Spanish conversation and composition class, it really helped enrich my understanding of the culture of a Spanish-speaking country.”

In studying Venezuela’s economic and financial reports, she gained insight into both the Venezuelan culture and how to read and analyze financial documents. As a result, Schweikle would like to become a forensic accountant, a decision that was solidified after participating in COD’s Job Shadow Program.

“During winter break, I was matched with an accounting controller and had a one-hour Zoom interview that was enlightening,” she said. “I am so glad that I learned about forensic accounting, because it combines my two career-based passions. Forensic accounting investigates illegal financial activity and is said to be quite challenging. Luckily, I am always up for a challenge, and I would love to have a job that always keeps me on my toes. Plus, I get to use my knowledge of the law and my knowledge of accounting to solve complex issues.”

After earning her Associate in Arts degree and being named an Outstanding Graduate finalist, Schweikle transferred to Elmhurst University after receiving the Elmhurst University Transfer Scholarship, a full-tuition award presented annually to one COD student. While at Elmhurst, she worked as an accounting and finance tutor, was elected as vice president for her sorority, made the Dean’s List, and joined the Delta Mu Delta business honors society. She also was an accounting and tax intern at a small accounting firm and, during summer of 2022, enjoyed an internship at KPMG in Chicago.

Graduating summa cum laude with bachelors’ degrees in accounting and finance, as well as a minor in Spanish, Schweikle was a finalist for the outstanding senior award, earned the Accounting Student of the Year award and was named the outstanding senior in the School of Business.

She is now studying to earn her CPA licensure and accepted a job as an international tax associate with KPMG.

More COD Success Stories

For students considering COD, Schweikle has two pieces of advice.

“The first is to not let others dictate your life or tell you your worth. I know that some of my peers looked down on me for attending a community college, but now I am debt-free, have published research into a database, and have my educational path clearly laid out and planned,” she said. “My second piece of advice is to get involved on campus. As a full-time student in the Honors Program, I was worried that I would not have time for extracurricular activities. However, managing my time was not nearly as difficult as I thought, and I made connections in my clubs and honors societies that I never would have made if I didn't take that risk. In fact, I met my best friend in the Honors Program, and we were both officers of the Alpha Mu Gamma Foreign Language Honor Society.

“I took every opportunity at COD to help prepare me to succeed in my career. I am thrilled to see what my future holds!”

Learn more about the Accounting program at College of DuPage