Jonathan Manson

Country of origin: United Kingdom

Accountant, Ernst & Young

The Ernst & Young Degree offers a unique programme that provides a significant head start for anyone looking to become an accountant.

The degree appealed to me for three main reasons. Firstly was the growing reputation of  Lancaster University Management School at the time that I was applying for university. Secondly was the fact that the degree scheme fast-tracks students through the demanding professional studies process, leaving you with only three of the 10 professional exams left to sit once completing the course. And finally was the chance to work for a period of 18 months split over three placements (including a full-year placement) at a global accounting firm.

For my placements with Ernst & Young I was based in the audit department of the Birmingham office. Working in one of the firm’s regional offices allowed me to experience a wide variety of clients in terms of both operating sector and size. The placements were extremely important to me in developing my accounting knowledge. Working with the firm for 18 months provides students with a major advantage over other accounting students in that it allows you to apply the knowledge gained during university studies in a real-life environment. This means that you’re able to both practise skills learnt and develop a meaningful understanding of accounting theory and techniques that can prove important when sitting exams.

I enjoyed my time on the Ernst & Young degree. It was an extremely rewarding process which has left me well prepared for working life. As part of my graduation I received the Princess Alexandra Award from Lancaster University which was awarded to the students with the seven highest results in that year. It was an achievement that I am extremely proud of and can be directly attributed to the high-quality teaching in Lancaster University Management School and from my great experiences during my placements with Ernst & Young.

I returned to the firm in September 2012.