The fourth year of Ernst & Young's Discover Tax Leadership Conference drew 102 minority college students from all over the country to New York (braving the cold) to learn about tax - and themselves.

At a hotel in Times Square, a Beyonc

The Discover Tax program has helped E&Y increase the number of minority campus hires for its tax practice, with African-American and Hispanic full-time campus hires increasing by 6 percentage points since the program started in 2007. Minority partners and staff now represent 30 percent of the firm's total U.S. employee population - more than double the representation a decade ago.

Americas director of inclusiveness recruiting Ken Bouyer, who has been with E&Y for 19 years, told a story about a peacock in a flock of penguins to illustrate how he felt as an African-American first starting out at the firm. "That experience was not good," he said. "But very quickly, some very key people in the firm said, 'Look, we brought you here to be you.'"

Last year, 70 percent of the conference's participants received internship offers, and 88 percent of those students accepted. Within a few weeks of this year's conference, all participants will be granted a second interview (the first was during the program's application process) with local recruiters.

In conjunction with Discover Tax, E&Y hosted its second Campus Diversity and Inclusiveness Roundtable for faculty to discuss best practices regarding diversity issues facing undergraduate business programs.

For more on Discover Tax, visit www.ey.com/us/discovertax.

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