Trainee Accountant Daena Wins Internship With BDO

Down accounting student Daena has all the right answers

Down accounting student Daena has all the right answers

A local Down accounting student Daena has all the right answers. The undergraduate second year accounting student Daena Sinclair, is delighted to have been one of the three winning students in an essential skills interview competition.

Organised by the Business School at Ulster University as part of the BSc (Hons) Accounting Pathways Programme, it was supported by BDO NI and took place at the firm’s Donegall Square offices in Belfast.

Daena Sinclair is delighted to have been selected for an internship with BDO. (Photos courtesy of BDO).

Now in its eighth year, the competition is designed to prepare local university students as they embark on the job market by equipping them with the essential skills required for a successful job interview.

From almost 80 hopefuls on the day, Daena ended up walking away with the coveted prize following a gruelling selection process that centred on mock interviews to help identify the very best candidates.

“I am absolutely delighted to have been named as one of this year’s three prize winners,” said Daena, “and I look forward to participating in the Summer Internship Programme with BDO Northern Ireland.

“I thoroughly enjoyed the interview skills session that was delivered by BDO Northern Ireland; Lisa and Rachel were fantastic and gave great insight into the company along with excellent advice on how to prepare for the mock interview,” she added.

Prior to the graded element of the competition, BDO NI HR Manager Lisa McAleer and BDO NI trainee Chartered Accountant Rachel Quinn delivered an in-depth mock interview workshop for students. This was accompanied by short videos created by those sitting on the interview panel that contained hints and tips and which students were able to access on demand via the business media platform, LinkedIn.

Ann Lundy, Audit Director at BDO Northern Ireland, said: “Giving future talent as much help and guidance as possible is a cornerstone of what the audit, tax and business advisory firm does.

“At BDO NI, we put significant emphasis on supporting young people throughout their education or training, with the aim of preparing them for when they eventually move into the world of work.

“Without practical initiatives such as these awards, students would not get the opportunity to learn practical skills that become such an important part of their professional development when they start their careers.

“When applying for jobs, the interview process will be the first impression an employer gets of a prospective employee, and it is important to be ready to take advantage of the opportunity by showcasing your knowledge and your skills in a confident and measured manner.

Pictured L-R (back row) is BDO NI HR Manager Lisa McAleer and Dr Helen Foster, Course Director at Ulster University. They are joined by (front row) Ann Lundy (Director at BDO NI), competition winners Eoin Hamill and Sam Lynas, and Laura Morgan, the Course Director at Ulster University.

“The opportunity to intern with BDO NI will provide students with first-hand experience of working in a professional setting, engaging with experts across our services and a range of clients on a daily basis.”

A total of 78 students signed up for this year’s competition and by winning it Daena also receives a cash prize and the offer of an internship with BDO NI where her mentor will provide her with advice and guidance as she continues her course studies with Ulster University.

Laura Morgan, Course Director and Lecturer at Ulster University Business School, re-emphasised the importance of the mock interview process, and added: “It was great to visit BDO NI’s lovely new offices in the city centre this year where they interviewed 78 second year accounting students.

`’I would like to thank BDO NI for the significant amount of time and effort they continue to put into this module.  

“The mock interview facilitates the growth and development of our young people in preparation for the workplace by giving them real life experience, and excellent exposure to one of the top graduate employers in Northern Ireland.”

Laura added: “I would like to thank the team at BDO NI and congratulate the interview team for the work they put into the videos, and for making the students feel very comfortable throughout the interview process.

“And I would also like to congratulate Daena Sinclair, Eoin Hamill and Sam Lynas for delivering an exceptional interview, and for scoring so highly as a result.”