Following an outstanding performance at the Scottish heats of Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales BASE (Business Accounting Skills) competition in November Duncanrig Secondary rightfully earned their place to compete for the title of BASE champions at a prestigious national final held in Birmingham on 29th June 2017.
BASE is ICAEW’s National Business and Accounting competition for students in school or college aged 16-19. A unique and exciting experience, students are able to engage in a business challenge that enables them to develop key employability skills and understand what it’s like to be an ICAEW Chartered Accountant.
Representing the school were 4 Advanced Higher Business Management students – Sam Forbes, Greg Kelly, Catrina Mackay and Gregor Watson. They were among the top 43 teams from across the UK and managed to beat off tough competition in order to get to the final stage. Their teachers, Mrs Taylor and Mrs Boyd, accompanied them on this trip to Birmingham.
Students had the support of a well-established, professional accountant, Lesley-Anne Logan of Clyde Gateway, who acted as a mentor, both in the Scottish heats and at the final in Birmingham. As part of the competition pupils were presented with a business scenario which they had to analyse in detail then make and justify recommendations to a panel of 3 judges – Gary Wong ACA (Senior Manager, Grant Thornton), Ailsa Acklam-Drury ACA (Business Manager, BBC) and Jennifer Turner ACA (Financial Controller, Lionsgate Films).
The trip began with the students meeting at Edinburgh airport at 10 am for the flight to Birmingham. Registration for the event took place at 5 pm followed by dinner, which gave students the opportunity to meet some of the other teams competing in the event and the judges. At dinner students were joined by one of the judges, Amrit Mahbubani (Assistant Manager, EY), who gave them an insight into his career as an Accountant with a renowned global organisation. After dinner entertainment was provided. Competition day started after breakfast at 7.30 am when students joined their mentor to begin the process of analysing the case study and preparing their presentation with recommendations on how to improve the company.
Using their Advanced Business Management knowledge Duncanrig students were able to deliver an excellent presentation including a number of creative recommendations which impressed all of the judges. Presentations were followed by an awards ceremony and lunch. Much to our delight Duncanrig won the prize for the most innovative recommendation. Judges commended their knowledge of transfer pricing, taxation and the importance of corporate social responsibility. The prize includes a full day employability skills workshop with a well-known Chartered Accountant firm Crowe Clark Whitehill. Students are now looking forward to taking advantage of this opportunity.