Kilkenny's Isabel hits the numbers with highest marks in country

Kilkenny's Isabel hits the numbers with highest marks in country

Isabel Balchada

Star scholar Isabel Balchada has launched herself into a career in accountancy after securing the highest marks in the country in Accounting Technicians Ireland’s Online Programme this year.

The 36-year-old Kilkenny woman returned to study after a 15-year absence and has since gained employment as a direct result of the ATI course, which she completed through the Institute’s Online Programme.

“I was unemployed prior to starting the course, although I had experience in office administration and book-keeping from being previously self-employed,” she said.

ATI’s Diploma for Accounting Technicians is recognised as the fastest pathway to an accounting career, and its Online Programme offers students the chance to gain the qualification in a flexible, convenient way.

“The course starts from the basics so is accessible to everyone, whatever their background and it gives you a good understanding of accounting, taxation and company law to prepare you for a variety of positions,” said Isabel.

“I did my second year online and I’d really recommend that option to anyone. It’s more self-driven but you are given so many resources and support that you feel you are not on your own. I loved being back studying after 15 years and I intend to continue studying in the field.”

ATI’s Online Programme is delivered directly by the Institute. Students receive support from both ATI and its lecturers, including tutor support, recorded lectures and regular online assessments.

Students view a recorded lecture in every subject each week and there are also virtual classes, face-to-face weekends, subject and student forums and subject assessments throughout the year.

ATI’s qualifications provide access to employment opportunities for a broad range of accounting and finance roles and will enable students to further progress to senior financial management posts.

Accounting Technicians are qualified accounting professionals that work at all levels of finance throughout the private and public sector, industry and commerce and in accountancy practices.

“Our Online Programme has gone from strength to strength since its launch in 2014, and the consistently high results that students such as Isabel have achieved speak for themselves,” said Gillian Doherty, ATI’s Chief Operations Officer.

“Ours is a pan-sectoral qualification 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, ACCA, CPA, CIMA and IIPA as well as Higher Education third-level accounting programmes,” said Ms Doherty.

ATI is now enrolling for a January intake on the Online Programme, which starts on January 9, 2017.