2019 Best & Brightest: Evie Blackburn, University of San Diego

Evie Blackburn

University of San Diego School of Business

“Genuine, motivated, loyal, systematic, loving, organized, thoughtful, curious, tea-enthusiast, welcoming, detail-oriented, and most-likely smiling.”

Fun fact about yourself: I have freckles in both of my eyes.

Hometown: Laguna Hills, California

High School: JSerra High School

Major: Bachelor of Accountancy

Minor: Mathematics

Favorite Business Course: Accounting Analytics

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  • Delta Sigma Pi- Lambda Pi, Professional Business Fraternity
    • Chancellor, January 2019 – Present
    • President, September 2018 – December 2018
    • Professional Development Chair, January 2018 – May 2018
    • Vice President of Scholarship and Awards, January 2017 – May 2017
    • Secretary of Pledge Class, September 2016 – December 2016
  • Volunteer at Gigi’s Playhouse, Down Syndrome Achievement Center January 2019 – Present
  • Accounting Tutor, January 2017 – Present
  • Mathematics Tutor, January 2016 – December 2016
  • Accounting Society, Active Member
  • Beta Alpha Psi, Active Member
  • Deloitte 2017 National Leadership Conference Attendee
  • KPMG 2017 Discover Program Attendee
  • PwC 2017 Elevate Program Attendee
  • EY 2017 Emerging Leaders Program Attendee
  • Anglo American University Student in Prague, Czech Republic, Fall Semester 2017
  • Dean’s List (All Semesters)
  • Alcala Merit Scholarship Recipient
  • 2018 BACC Scholarship Recipient
  • FMC Level I Certification from Adventis

Where have you interned during your college career?

Ernst & Young, LLP   June 2018 – August 2018

Assurance Intern

  • Assisted engagement teams in performing audits of financial statements and internal controls
  • Prepared placemat flowcharts from prior year walk-throughs.
  • Updated and improved engagements on EY’s online audit platform, Canvas.

9Round Kickboxing January 2018 – June 2018

Fitness Trainer

  • Demonstrated and instructed members through high-intensity interval training while modifying exercises according to injuries and requests.
  • Maintained an atmosphere of high energy and encouragement to help members reach their highest fitness potential.
  • Executed sales calls, first-time workouts, and promotional conversations to recruit new members to the gym.

Where will you be working after graduation? I will be working at Ernst & Young as an Assurance Staff in the San Diego office.

What company do you admire most? I most admire Kiva. This is an international nonprofit that has the mission to expand financial access through crowdfunding loans. Their platform creates a partnership of mutual dignity that cultivates opportunity to those who would not have otherwise had it. Kiva allows you to play an instrumental role in someone else’s story of success. It is reinventing microfinance to create positive and lasting change that empowers others along the way.

Who is your favorite professor? My favorite professor is Johan Perols. I have taken his Accounting Information Systems and Accounting Analytics classes. He has a contagious enthusiasm for the future of data analytics, specifically within the accounting industry. This excitement not only made his lectures incredibly interesting, but his coursework also covered topics which were challenging, applicable, and rewarding. His intelligence and passion for sharing it with his students is what makes him a profound professor.

What did you enjoy most about your business school? I most enjoyed the tight-knit community and personalized attention between students and faculty. Almost every professor knew me by name, and they were readily available to provide me with the resources to succeed in their class. In addition, I really valued the professional perspective they added to their courses by sharing their own experiences during their careers.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? It is important to consider the following:

  • What strengths would you bring and in what way could a business major help you grow?
  • Find a major where you find your value.
  • Focus on the learning aspect of your academics. Take classes that intrigue you and get as much out of them as possible by setting up meetings with professors to question and expand on areas that interest you.

“If I didn’t major in business, I would be majoring in or studying… Biochemistry, so that I could go to medical school to become an obstetrician.”

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? I grew up surrounded by entrepreneurs in my family. From an early age, my parents taught me how to save, budget my allowance, and have basic financial literacy. I have always been very detail-oriented and I love working with numbers, so after my first accounting class, I was hooked.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of my term as President of the Business Fraternity, Delta Sigma Pi. I was honored to be elected to lead a group of people who inspire me with their professional aspirations and intelligence. The challenges of leading 81 active members presented an incredible opportunity for personal growth. I am proud of the work I put into my chapter and my ability to lead with positivity.

Which classmate do you most admire? I most admire Greg Shamoon. He is someone who leads by example and with kindness and respect. Despite being incredibly busy with his various achievements and goals, he is interested and selfless in helping others reach theirs. Above all, he is a thoughtful and caring person who takes the time to write hand-written thank you notes or ask about a specific thing that you forgot you even mentioned to him. I am incredibly excited to see all that he will accomplish.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I would like to thank my amazing mom. Her example of strength, motivation, and perseverance has guided me to my own path of success. I thank her for actively strengthening my family’s bond through times of tragedy, as well as joy. Most importantly, I thank her for supporting me with unconditional love and for teaching me to do the same for those I care about. I will always be grateful for the home from which she has continually encouraged me to spread my wings and fly.

What are the top two items on your bucket list?

  • Go paragliding in the Swiss Alps
  • Meet a baby elephant

What are your hobbies? A few of my favorite things include: drinking tea, watching movies, skiing (or doing anything) in Sun Valley, Idaho, listening to murder mystery podcasts, the smell of rain, and spending time with the people I love.

What made Evie such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2019?

“Few students stand out in class for their high-level academic achievements as well as their strong ethical values, and interpersonal and emotional intelligence. Evie Blackburn belongs to this very selective group of leaders. In the few years that I have known her, she has demonstrated to have the discipline, perseverance and hardworking skills of any organization’s top-level hires, while also possessing the essential traits of those who have inspired and shaped our world for the better through compassionate service, empathy, and commitment to a higher cause. Evie is an exemplary leader who understands that with great power comes great responsibility and she is not afraid to embrace that. While maintaining a 3.97 Accounting GPA, Evie was also able to manage to make time for local charity events including blood drives, elementary school cleanings among other projects that greatly impacted our community. Not only that, but she also provided great value to her classmates through multiple leadership roles she held including Chancellor, President, Professional Development Chair and mentor in various on-campus accounting organizations. We are proud to see her graduate from USD’s class of 2019 with a wonderful opportunity to make a big impact in the world through her appointment as Assurance Staff at Ernst & Young. The business world needs more high-caliber ethically minded leaders, and Evie is certainly going to fulfill that. For all of her achievements in and outside of class at USD, I wholeheartedly and enthusiastically provide this recommendation.”

Diane Pattison
Academic Director of Graduate Accountancy Programs and Professor of Accounting