EY has announced the launch of its Assurance Scholarship programme which aims to support 60 students across the University of Bath, University of Lancaster and University of Warwick. The scholarship offers a combination of financial support as well as work experience within EY’s Assurance practice for students committed to a career in the sector.
For small and large accounting and consulting firms, talent is a key priority. To ensure students have the right skills for a career in accounting, audit and finance, they not only need theory but also the opportunity to develop their work experience in practice. In a partnership with the universities of Bath, Lancaster and Warwick, EY has set up a scholarship for promising young talent to be groomed for its Assurance practice.
The Assurance Scholarship will be available to 60 students across the universities and offers £5,000 per year to support the costs of university attendance. Besides capital investment, the firm will also provide paid summer work in the second year at one of the firm’s UK offices, as well as a year-long industrial placement throughout the third year of study. The aim of the scholarship is to provide a practical environment in which the theory gained from the university education can be implemented in real client assignments and project work. Successful scholarship candidate will put their theory into practise, in services areas such as audit, financial reporting, fraud and corporate crime a position in the firm’s Assurance practice.
Commenting on the programme, Hywel Ball, EY’s Managing Partner for Assurance in the UK & Ireland, says: “Our Assurance Scholarship programme is designed for those who are focussed on starting a career in accountancy, but who don’t want to miss out on the university experience. We already offer school leaver, graduate and undergraduate programmes, but we are expanding the range of career entry routes in response to growing demand. It’s a great opportunity for students to earn while they learn.”
With the changes to the UK Student Loan system, seeing students fork out £9,000 for fees, the total of £40,000 for the lifecycle of the Assurance Scholarship, from the combined scholarship payment and work, is designed to give students committed to a career in accounting, audit and finance a financial leg-up, such that they are able to focus on making the most of their time at university. With a further £1,000 per year on offer for students “who meet the criteria for widening access to higher education.” As part of the scholarship, students will also be encouraged to study toward professional accounting qualifications to be an ICAS or ICAEW qualified chartered accountant.
Ball adds. “Employability skills are essential for today’s graduates and work experience is now considered to be pre-requisite for many graduate employers. Combined with the academic qualifications, skills such as team working, time management and real life client interactions, will help graduates of the EY Assurance Scholarship scheme to stand out in a competitive jobs market.”