|Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Sen. Maxine McClean (front row, centre)??with members of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and the Accounting Students’ Association. (S. Patel)??|
Scholars in the Accounting Students’ Association (ASA) of the University of the West Indies (UWI), Cave Hill Campus, have been advised "to get experience".
This advice had come from Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean, as she addressed a meeting of the Association last Monday at the Campus.
She said that practical knowledge was key to the development of their future careers, and asked the youngsters not to adopt the "expert syndrome" but to pursue apprenticeships during their course of study.
"Work in a firm or attach yourself to an accountant.?? Do not rush off and do [a] Masters [degree] without gaining experience.?? Do not become an expensive blank sheet that no one will hire," she affirmed, adding that apprenticeship was essential to understanding the rudiments of the accounting profession.
Outlining that "you need to do more than pass exams", the Foreign Affairs Minister noted that it was vital for students to actively acquire information by reading annual reports and local, regional and international newspapers.?? She also encouraged them to develop critical thinking and to enhance their communication skills.
She further stated that while it was in the best interest of the client to understand accounting, she emphasised: "You need to be able to clearly communicate and articulate the balance sheet and other facets of accounting; so this calls for you, the accountant to be strongly versed in the English language."