DOD internship is a key part of this accounting major’s experiential learning


Accounting major Marcou Shohdi has a plan for his time at George Mason University, and he is carefully executing it. His plan: to get experience in public, corporate, and government accounting before he graduates.

“This will allow me to make a well-informed choice regarding the direction of my career,” he said. 

Marcou Shodi is in a navy blue suit, standing with crossed arms and smiling for the camera in front of a bronze statue of a sailor.
Photo by Ron Aira/George Mason University

Shohdi, who was born in Egypt and lives in Gainesville, Virginia, transferred to Mason from Northern Virginia Community College, where he earned his associate’s degree in business administration. For him, accounting as a major and a career was a clear choice.

Shohdi said what he is looking for in terms of his career was stability, flexibility, job security, and opportunities for advancement, and accounting provides all that.

“Accounting skills are always in demand,” he said. “Every business—from public accounting firms to nonprofits—needs to manage its financial records and comply with tax regulations, even during economic downturns.”

Shohdi already has six years in corporate accounting under his belt from his day jobs; he is currently a senior accountant at EEA Companies. This summer he decided to give government accounting a try.

Shohdi was one of four Mason students chosen for an internship in the U.S. Navy’s Financial Management and Comptroller (FM&C) Office. The program, a partnership between FM&C and Mason’s School of Business, was established by Dean Ajay Vinzé and Mason alum Alaleh Jenkins, BS Accounting ’97, who is principal deputy assistant secretary of the Navy, to bring new talent to government service.

Shohdi made the most of his time working at the Navy Yard and even completed the 23 courses required to obtain a level 1 Department of Defense (DoD) financial management certification.

“The skills I've gained in feedback coordination, status tracking, and collaboration are invaluable,” said Shohdi. “I'm particularly thankful for the exposure to cross-departmental collaboration, enabling me to incorporate compliance procedures into Navy policies. Tracking [Notices of Findings and Recommendations] responses and contributing to revisions has honed my process improvement abilities.”

He also said the DoD courses were a huge help in mastering the Navy’s many acronyms and systems.

What’s next up for Shohdi is public accounting, and he has that covered. He has an internship with KPMG, one of the Big Four accounting organizations, scheduled for January 2024.