Student takes advantage of many internships

Katie DeFiore | The Daily Collegian

For Khadija Bingham , it’s all about the money, honey.

Now running a lifestyle blog with a financial literacy focus called MoneyHoney, Bingham (senior-finance and accounting) has taken advantage of every opportunity that has come her way.

A four-year paid internship with Comcast was the first big chance Bingham was presented with and she hadn’t even begun college yet.

However, she was told about it only two days before the application deadline.

The night before it was due, Bingham said she was up working hard on the extensive application.

Exhausted, she eventually decided just to give up and go to sleep. She was only a senior in high school and knew more opportunities were bound to come.

Tossing and turning in her sleep, Bingham said she could not stop thinking about the application.

“That was God telling me, you need to do this,” Bingham said.

So, she got up, finished the application, and began her journey in the business field.

“My first summer internship in community investment was a great place to start. It was my first introduction to corporate America,” Bingham said. “I learned about office politics, what to wear, what to say in meetings, how not to fall asleep in boring meetings.”

She said she knew during her third summer with Comcast that she wanted to go somewhere else where she could explore public accounting.

Bingham left the four-year Comcast internship a year early when yet another job experience became available to her.

“I swindled my way into an event panel with a representative from PricewaterhouseCoopers , one of the biggest public accounting firms in the country,” Bingham said. “The event was a discussion about women stepping up in corporate America and asking for raises and promotions.”

The PwC representative Joe Atkinson asked at the end if the audience had any questions, and Bingham jumped at the opportunity, saying she wanted to make sure he knew she was in the room.

One thing led to another and a simple question turned into a special request on his part, asking the head recruiter to “make sure Khadija is on the list for an internship with PwC.”

She ended up spending two summers interning with PwC, first in marketing and sales and the second time with audit.

“I was really grateful to learn what I liked and what I didn’t like through all of these opportunities and while I’m still in college,” Bingham said.

Her latest internship was last spring with Goldman Sachs , a leading global investment-banking firm, which turned into a full-time job offer after graduation as an internal audit.

Director of the Integrated Master of Accounting Program and Bingham’s adviser, Ed Babcock, said she is “one of the most explorational students” he has ever had.

“She has a big vision of her life and believes she is going to accomplish great things, and as a result, I think she will,” he said.

One of her more recent accomplishments is her own website, MoneyHoney .

“I think that the goal of MoneyHoney would be twofold. The first piece of it would be to cultivate a conversation about what it means to be financially stable. People know that they don’t want to be broke, and they know they want to be rich, but they don’t know how to be either of those things,” Bingham said. “The second part would be to share all the things that I’m learning, just to give back in a sense.”

The website launched on Jan. 3 and Bingham said she has already received great feedback.

“I think it’s great. She loves personal finance and she’s so passionate and knowledgeable about it,” Bingham’s friend Camila Chicarelli (senior-finance and accounting) said. “She loves to help people and wants everyone to know how to manage their financial lives.”

There were a lot of different factors motivating Bingham to create this website. She said there is a huge financial literacy gap she wants to help close.

She said she has watched a lot of her friends’ parents mismanage money and then be incapable of cosigning for loans for college because their credit scores were too low.

“I asked myself, you know, what can I do to not let that kind of thing happen to anyone else?” Bingham said.

In addition to these experiences, she spent a lot of time searching online for other blogs that were providing similar advice and came up short.

“I was finding more and more blogs and people out there having these conversations, but there wasn’t anybody who looked like me or had similar stories out there talking about it,” Bingham said.

She said she found maybe five financial literacy blogs started by black women, and their websites were still different than what she wanted hers to look like.

“I want to share my journey,” Bingham said. “As I do learn, I want to share what I’m learning and as I make mistakes I want to share those mistakes as well so others don’t have to make them.”