UNI gives accounting alum foundation to succeed
Ever since high school, Mike Bringle (Accounting '96) knew he liked numbers.
He took an introduction to finance and bookkeeping class in his small-town northwest Iowa high school and connected with one of his high school business teachers. It just kind of clicked for him. “That was a class I really enjoyed,” Bringle said. “I just could see myself in accounting and doing accounting. What I didn’t know until I got out of school was how having that accounting background and that foundation, how solid that has been for me in my career.”
The initial class led him to pursue accounting in college. When looking at the various colleges around Iowa, UNI stuck out. It was the perfect fit, and the accounting curriculum was just what he was looking for. “I just kind of liked everything about it,” Bringle said. “I felt like the right fit. It was a pretty easy decision to go to UNI, and I was looking to get my accounting degree, so just knowing that UNI had a strong accounting program helped me with the decision as well.”
Bringle was involved the Pi Sigma Epsilon fraternity and was also a member of the UNI Accounting Club. Both of those helped him connect with a local advertising agency in Cedar Falls. He landed an internship there and was eventually hired full time after he graduated in 1996, eventually being promoted to accounting manager.
He moved down to Des Moines in 1998 to work at Kum & Go as a financial analyst before going to Wells Fargo in 2004. In 2011, he was hired at Palmer Group as a recruiting consultant. He is now the director of recruiting in the accounting and finance realms at Palmer Group. “My parents owned a grocery store when I was a kid, so in the back of my mind I wanted to do something on my own,” Bringle said. “I just kind of leveraged my accounting background to do that. I wasn’t sure what it would look like, but at Palmer Group they were looking for a recruiting consultant who had an accounting background. It worked out for me.”
As director of recruiting, Bringle helps companies with their employment needs in accounting and finance, whether that be a temporary or a direct hire. He lives in Waukee with his wife and three kids. Because of his background, he has been able to succeed in his current role. “I’m talking to hiring managers and CFOs and controllers, and I have a good understanding because of that accounting base,” Bringle said. “I have a really good understanding of what they’re doing in looking for talent and connecting them with talent they want.”