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Future forensic accountant tries all York College has to offer

Marissa stands with her arms crossed outside along a railing.

Picture a losing game of Tetris. Blocks of colors—blue, purple, yellow, red, and gray—all stacked on top of each other filling the screen. That’s what Marissa Boyles’ Google calendar looks like. It looks as though she’s involved in just about everything on the York College of Pennsylvania campus, from the rugby team to the student senate. Scheduling all her activities is like putting together a puzzle.

But piecing things together, figuring out what goes where—that’s what Marissa likes best. It’s why she’s into true crime, why she’s so good at math, and why she wants to combine the two in a career in forensic accounting when she graduates.

A feel for forensics

It was an eighth-grade elective class that first sparked Marissa’s interest in true crime. She loved learning about fingerprinting and all that went into catching criminals. It wasn’t until after that class she started watching the true crime classic show, Forensic Files. She has wanted to go into forensics ever since. “I like the way the evidence builds up and points to a certain person or a certain aspect,” she says.

It’s the same reason she likes math. “I like when things work out like that,” she says. “Numbers, for the most part, are made to work out a certain way. It’s very satisfying.”

She’s majoring in Accounting with a minor in Criminalistics and hopes to work at an accounting firm that specializes in fraud when she graduates. When Marissa pictures her future, she’s calmly explaining her forensic accounting work from the witness stand in a courtroom, helping bring a criminal to justice.

A little bit of everything

Marissa isn’t wasting a moment of her time at York College. The scope of her interests is vast: she’s on student senate, plays on the rugby team, and she’s in the Sigma Delta Tau sorority. She’s also a student alumni ambassador and was an orientation leader for incoming first-year students. “I like having a lot of different connections with different people,” she says. “Since our school is smaller, I think it’s a lot easier to be involved in more things.”

Being so involved means Marissa has to really plan out her days. She schedules out every free hour, from homework to gym time. That kind of self-created structure is where she thrives. “I know myself,” she says. “I know that if I have three hours I’ll probably sleep or do something on my phone. So, I think I just feel more productive if I’m busy.”

Surprising herself

Marissa didn’t plan on playing rugby. And that first game? She was terrified. But now, she loves it. She lifts weights with her teammates in the gym and loves to see people’s reaction when they find out she plays such an intimidating sport. “It has definitely improved my confidence,” she says.

She didn’t plan on joining a sorority, either. But, she loves the people she’s met and the focus on community service.

Saying yes to opportunities has helped her network and given her confidence among almost any group of people. As a sophomore, she’s got plenty of time to try more things—if she can make room on her calendar. “I’ve taken everything the school had to offer,” she says, “and said, ‘Yes, please.’”

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