ICAEW.com works better with JavaScript enabled.
Your current browser is not capable of using this site without JavaScript. Please use an updated browser or enable JavaScript to continue.

My ACA experience: Ryan

To celebrate diversity is to celebrate what makes us unique, and proud of the value we bring to the workplace.

Ryan Makuku

Ryan Makuku Assistant Vice President, Barclays

ICAEW route: Graduate

Industry: Banking

Location: London

Ryan's story...

Tell us about your career journey and what you do day-to-day in your role. 

I first joined Barclays through its 2016 Spring Week and 2017 Summer Internship programmes – both of which led to a 2018 Graduate offer. I have since rolled off the programme as an Assistant Vice President in Treasury, where my role mainly involves managing interest rate risk on Barclays’ assets and liabilities.

Why do you think it is so important for workplaces to support and celebrate diversity?

No two of us in this world are the same. So when people from all walks of life connect in the workplace, leaving what makes us unique at the door is a huge discredit to one’s integrity and character. Therefore, to celebrate diversity is to celebrate what makes us unique, and proud of the value we bring to the workplace.

What are the challenges of being a Black student/member in accountancy?

A lack of role models. I believe there is genuine power in seeing people who have come before me – that look and talk like me – achieving highly. By seeing someone else’s success, it helps a great deal in visualising and, ultimately manifesting, that same success for my career too. 

Do you support any initiatives at work or outside of work to support or promote diversity? Does your role as an ICAEW Chartered Accountant/ACA student give you a platform to do this?

I currently sit on Barclays’ Black Professionals Forum as a Careers Lead, and on the EY Foundation’s Youth Advisory Board. I am also a big supporter of the New Gen Accountants. All three serve the purpose – in some capacity - of tackling racial and socioeconomic inequality. As an ACA student, I hope to leverage this platform and use it to inspire future generations.

What advice do you have for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic students considering a career as an ICAEW Chartered Accountant?

Qualifying as an ICAEW Chartered Accountant is undoubtably a great achievement, and one that will open many doors. But to consider this path is not only great for career prospects, but also an amazing opportunity to change the narrative, face and stigma associated with accountancy. Relish the opportunity to be part of a change that may inspire a diverse generation of future ICAEW Chartered Accountants. 

Sign-up to receive our Graduate newsletter

Sign-up here