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  • Northside West

Shauna can count on career pathway

Wednesday, 12th September, 2018 7:59am
Shauna can count on career pathway

Shauna McCabe pictured at work in MBM Chartered Accountants.

Shauna can count on career pathway

Shauna McCabe pictured at work in MBM Chartered Accountants.

ACCOUNTING Technician Ireland’s ‘earn as you learn’ apprenticeship is proving to be the perfect solution for Dubliner Shauna McCabe who was searching for a career pathway after spending some time working in Beijing.

Shauna (23) says although she had no background in accountancy, she was surprised at how much she knew when she started the course through her time in retail.

The graduate of anthropology and ancient classics had just returned home from working as an English teacher in Beijing when her cousin sent her a link to the course at Colaiste Ide in Finglas.

The Accounting Technicians Ireland (ATI) Apprenticeship is a funded, work-based learning programme in which locally placed apprentices earn at least €18,000 a year and the course is open to both mature learners and Leaving Cert students.

The course is also available at other Dublin venues Blackrock Further Education Institute and Rathmines Further Education Institute.

Apprentices can work in all sectors of the economy, with organisations ranging from large accountancy firms to SMEs and the public sector.

Shauna has begun her apprenticeship with MBM Chartered Accountants in Clonee and admits she loves the option of working and learning simultaneously.

“When I finished university, I was working as a manager of a shop in Blanchardstown but always liked accountancy,” she said.

“I was just home from teaching English in Beijing when my cousin sent me the link, knowing I’d be interested.

Shauna has spent one day a week studying and four days working with the firm during college term, and is now spending the summer working five days in her placement.

“The course is fantastic and I love that I can then actively put into practice immediately what I’m learning,” she said.

“I found it funny that there was an aspect of the course that I felt was familiar until I realised that I had used it while managing the cash in my retail job.

“I’m even encouraging my younger brother, who has finished his Leaving Certificate, to think about the course as a serious option.”

MBM Chartered Accountants said that they were delighted at how their involvement with the apprenticeship programme was working out.

“We have engaged with the ATI Apprenticeship Programme for the past two years and have found it a very positive experience for the firm,” said managing partner Ray Mulligan.

“The practical approach of the ATI course is evident from how our apprentices approach their work in the office.”

The practical nature of the programme, the salary and the fully-funded fees make the Accounting Technician Apprenticeship particularly appealing to Leaving Cert students who prefer learning by experience to full-time college education, according to Gillian Doherty, Chief Operations Officer at Accounting Technicians Ireland.

“When students complete the apprenticeship programme, they will have a strong, in-demand accountancy QQI Level 6 award, two years of solid work experience and the opportunity if they wish, to progress to further study in accountancy, business or finance,” said Ms Doherty.

“This is a pan-sectoral programme which meets the needs of industry, practice and the public sector, and graduates enjoy exemptions from the full range of professional accountancy bodies including Chartered Accountants Ireland, CPA, ACCA, CIMA and IIPA.”

There are 180 apprenticeships nationwide on offer through Accounting Technicians Ireland. Full details are available at

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