BHSU graduate and student athlete to begin work at regional accounting firm

Author: BHSU Communications/Friday, May 8, 2015/Categories: 2015








           Black Hills State University graduate Becca Ellis, of Rock Rapids, Iowa, will earn her professional accountancy and business administration-management degrees on Saturday, May 9, during BHSU&rsquos spring commencement ceremony. Ellis will begin a career as a staff tax accountant at Ketel Thorstenson in Rapid City in the fall.



At Becca Ellis&rsquo last track meet of her career at Black Hills State University, she shattered her record in the 1500-meter run.

Becca, from Rock Rapids, Iowa, had been working to break five flat in the race all season. After three attempts, the soon-to-be BHSU alum competed at an outdoor track meet in Nebraska and ran the race in 4:52.

"Not only did I break the record, I shattered it," Becca said. "It was such a great feeling to accomplish my goal."

BHSU allowed Becca to accomplish a number of her goals over the years, and as she receives her degrees in professional accountancy and business administration-management on Saturday, she has reached one of her largest goals, earning a professional position in her area of study.

Becca has been hired as a full-time staff tax accountant at Ketel Thorstenson in Rapid City. That position will begin in the fall. Until then, Becca will work as a job coach through the City of Rapid City Parks Department.

"It&rsquos really exciting," Becca said. "I wasn&rsquot expecting to get such a great job offer right out of college. I attribute that directly to Black Hills State and the connections the University makes with Ketel Thorstenson and all the local accounting firms."

Becca&rsquos interest in numbers began in high school and she solidified her career choice when she took her first accounting course.

I really liked numbers, but I wasn&rsquot sure if I wanted to go into math or something else along that line," Becca said. "Accounting just came so easily to me and I fell in love with it. I knew I wanted to be an accountant after that."

BHSU gave Becca the knowledge, skills and confidence to transition into a full-time career in accounting, she said.

"It&rsquos just really exciting to see where I can go from here, knowing that a lot of B-H grads have worked at Ketel Thorstenson and succeeded," Becca said.

Becca plans to earn her Certified Public Accountant (CPA) title by May 2016.

In addition to her classroom success, Becca is a member of the Yellow Jacket cross country, indoor and outdoor track and field teams, and is actively involved in Enactus, an international student organization that allows students to make a difference in their community and develop business leadership skills. Becca says she developed a variety of leadership skills as president of Enactus the past two years.

As a Yellow Jacket, Becca earned a variety of academic honors and was named the 2014 October Warrior of the Month, but it was the comradery she developed with her teammates that she considers a huge achievement.

"I came far from home, so getting to meet everyone on the team was fantastic. They became my friends, and BHSU was my home away from home," she said. "Building those relationships with your teammates is something that can&rsquot compare to anything else."

Becca will miss her teammates and fellow business students, as well as the entire BHSU community.

"I&rsquove gotten to meet a lot of the teachers in various areas across campus," Becca said. "It&rsquos just such a close community. Everyone is so friendly. I will miss being involved with the campus organizations and other students."


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