Accounting student Oscar Acland says that the opportunity to participate in activities supporting community organisations has been a highlight of his Otago undergraduate experience.
Oscar had a very “hands-on experience” with Ignite Consultants – a student-run, not-for-profit organisation providing free business consultancy to charities.
“I enjoyed testing new ideas and was able to work with a team advising the Citizens Advice Bureau on how to increase funding through KPIs and volunteer numbers. This was the perfect opportunity to take what I’d been learning in the classroom and put it straight into action.”
He also volunteered at Dunedin Community Accounting (DCA), a joint initiative of the University of Otago and Sport Otago, where he implemented the strategies and concepts he had learned during his studies.
“At DCA I work with a team of students and a chartered accountant to help fix day-to-day issues that affect non-profit charities in Dunedin.”
“DCA also offers many opportunities to do extra work. I put my hand up to work in a group organising and running a seminar to help first-time treasurers understand their role in their non-profit organisations.”
He found that many of the skills he learned from his DCA experience were easily transferable to the activities he performed during a summer internship with Ernst Young in Christchurch.
Oscar chose to major in Accounting because he felt that being able to understand the fundamentals of “what makes a company tick” would be an essential skill he could rely on in future.
“I would strongly advise anyone who is interested in numbers or looking in depth at how to break down a company, to study Accounting at Otago. It really gives you a fantastic base to work from and the support that all of my lecturers have given me has been amazing.”
“After I finish my degree, I’m going to take some time off before starting a graduate role with Ernst Young 2021. In the future I hope to be able to travel and work abroad, using all the knowledge I’ve gained at Otago, and applying it across a range of industries.”