Crunching the numbers

Freshman accounting student receives prestigious award

She grew up around accounting and numbers her entire life.

Now, freshman Hannah Schweitzer, the daughter of a former accountant and current credit analyst at Johnson Bank in Rice Lake, will be pursuing it as a career.

But unlike other incoming accounting students, Schweitzer will have financial assistance. She earned the 3M Accounting Scholarship, funded by the University Foundation and given to an incoming accounting student who displays strong academic achievement, national test scores and community and school leadership.

Schweitzer said growing up around her father’s profession helped spark her interest in the world of crunching numbers and auditing.

“I was kind of into it my whole life because I always heard about his work and everything,” she said. “And as I got older, I started doing the taxes with him and all that kind of stuff. I just sort of stuck with it.”

After graduating last spring from Rice Lake High School, Schweitzer chose UW-Eau Claire partly because she felt the business school stood out compared to other universities.

But another part of it was that she had the opportunity to play soccer for the Blugold women’s soccer team, where she is currently a forward.

She said she appreciates the opportunity to get some financial assistance as a reward for strong academics because it allows her to play the sport she loves along with balancing the expenses of paying for school.

“It’s great, I mean, college is getting expensive these days, so everything helps,” she said. “Being an athlete here doesn’t give me much time to get a job or anything like that, so having the extra support financially was just a really big blessing.”

University Foundation President Kimera Way said her office is always happy to help fund the education of deserving students.

“Scholarships are a critical component to the university’s viability and are invaluable when helping students obtain a great Blugold education while keeping an eye to the amount of debt they are incurring,” Way said. “In this case everyone is benefitting.”

3M is no stranger to Eau Claire students, as every summer the company recruits students from the university for the internship program.

Way said the connection between the school and the company is strong and not showing any signs of slowing up any time soon.

“UW-Eau Claire has had a long and mutually beneficial relationship with 3M; we also have a number of alumni who work there,” she said. “Another deserving student receiving a 3M scholarship is further testament to this great relationship.”