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My ACA experience: Mia

Mia planned on studying accounting at university, but changed her mind when she found out about the Higher Apprenticeship scheme on offer at BDO LLP. As an Audit Trainee, Mia works with lots of different types of business and enjoys meeting new people. She says that to succeed good communications skills are important, and that the programme gives you a way to develop these.

Mia Fisher

Mia Fisher Audit Trainee, BDO LLP

ICAEW route: Apprenticeship

Industry: Audit and assurance

Location: UK

Mia's story...

The increase in university fees made me question whether university was the best route for me, and I began to research alternatives.

I had intended to study accounting and finance at university, however once I discovered this Higher Apprenticeship programme at BDO I applied and was offered a place, so decided not to apply to university.

I liked the idea of being able to do something practical alongside studying - and with a Higher Apprenticeship you gain valuable work experience which sets you apart from most graduates.

The BDO apprenticeship programme appealed to me because it allowed me to work for an internationally recognised accountancy firm, while being well structured to enable me to progress.

I could also gain ICAEW’s Certificate in Finance, Accounting and Business (ICAEW CFAB), which consists of the first six modules of the ACA.

The programme fitted in really well with what I wanted to do and achieve from an apprenticeship.

To be successful in your Higher Apprenticeship programme, I think you need to be hard-working and keen to learn from those around you.

In audit, you spend a great deal of time with clients so it’s important to be confident and have good communication skills. However, these are all things that develop as you progress through the training contract.

I have enjoyed all the new opportunities that come with working for a large firm that many 18-year-olds aren’t likely to experience.

The variety of clients and nature of audit work means almost every week you get opportunity to meet and work with new people and see a wide range of different companies and working environments, which is really interesting.

The best advice I can give is to do your research. University isn’t the only route into accountancy and it’s good to know what options are out there.

If you decide that an apprenticeship is the route for you, you should spend time researching the company you’d like to apply for and take time over your application to demonstrate the commitment you have towards this route.

Find your route

There are a number of different routes to becoming an ICAEW Chartered Accountant. You can start your journey straight from school, while you're at university or after you have graduated. Find out which route is right for you.

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