Accent Stories

Jessica Roth

Alumna

Class of 2019

Jessica Roth’s ’19 Ashland University story highlights the power of a supportive educational environment and the transformational experiences a well-rounded university can offer. Her story is one of personal and professional growth, nurtured by Ashland’s unique culture and opportunities.

Originally from the Lodi, Ohio area, Roth was initially apprehensive about the financial commitment required for higher education and the potential culture change from a rural environment. However, Ashland’s generous scholarship program, including the prestigious Presidential Scholarship awarded for academic merit, made her university dreams a reality. “The scholarship was huge,” she says. “It allowed me to attend Ashland and pursue the future and career I wanted.”

Likewise, at Ashland, Roth found a warm and welcoming environment that mirrored the close-knit feel of her hometown. Even as a commuter during her first several years at Ashland, she immediately made connections and friendships. This cultural fit helped her transition smoothly into university life and fostered a sense of belonging. “The community was incredibly supportive, encouraging me both academically and personally. It felt like home.”

Roth’s academic journey included numerous internships that provided her with real-world experience in finance. “Ashland University’s internships are incredibly eye-opening,” she says. “I started as an intern where I now work (Whitcomb & Hess). I manage our internship program, so it’s neat to be on the other side of the table now.” These internships bridged the gap between theoretical knowledge and practical application. They also helped her understand which areas of the finance industry were the best fit and—just as crucially—which ones weren’t.

Her professors played a pivotal role in her development. Their obvious interest in her success and willingness to provide guidance made a lasting impact. “Even professors I interacted with for just one semester went out of their way to offer support and encouragement,” she says. “The personalized attention makes such a huge difference.”

Roth also took advantage of extracurricular activities, significantly enhancing her university experience. “I was a member of the Eagle Investment Group and was a member, officer and eventually President of our IMA (accounting) club on campus,” she says. “This opened opportunities for me to make lifelong friendships and I received scholarships to earn my Certified Management Accountant certification.”

Her commitment to her education and the comprehensive support she received at Ashland were important factors in landing a job in finance directly after graduation. “The skills and knowledge I gained, along with the practical experience from internships, made me a competitive candidate in the job market.” She adds: “I earned my MBA at Ashland, my CMA and my CPA certifications all within a year of graduating.”

Reflecting on her time at Ashland, Roth speaks fondly of the sense of community and belonging. “Driving past campus still feels like home. The university had a profound and positive influence on my life.”

Jessica Roth’s story exemplifies how a supportive educational environment, combined with practical experiences and strong mentorship, can lead to remarkable personal and professional success. Her journey at Ashland University not only prepared her for a thriving career in finance but also left her with a deep connection to her alma mater.

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