Career & Education

Afasha Foster, Samaro McBean awarded PwC scholarships

By JOSIMAR SCOTT
Career & Education reporter

Sunday, February 04, 2018

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AFASHA Foster and Samaro McBean were awarded the 2017/18 PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) scholarships at the company's Kingston offices on January 16.

“We believe that excellence should be rewarded and celebrated, and that is why every year we award scholarships to at least two students who display outstanding academic performance and embody the elements of PwC's work ethic, which includes hard work and dedication,” said Leighton McKnight, territory leader for Jamaica.

With the scholarship, Foster, a student at the University of Technology (UTech), and McBean, from The University of the West Indies (UWI) — both candidates for a bachelor's degree in accounting at their respective institutions — will be able to complete their studies. They are also eligible for internships which provide them with on-the-job experience as well as mentorship from PwC's experienced accountants.

“Most of our scholarship awardees transition to working with the firm and progress in their roles,” Natalie Fearon, external communications and public relations manager, markets, told Career & Education.

Since 2006, more than 34 students have been awarded scholarships, with over $2,000,000 disbursed since 2014. At least two outstanding young scholars, one from The UWI and the other from UTech, become recipients of funding each year.

Applicants for the PwC Scholarships are shortlisted by their respective universities, then interviewed by a panel comprising representatives of the accounting firm and/or The UWI.

Candidates should have “a record of high academic achievement” in examinations, with a grade point average of at least 3.6; proven leadership qualities; and demonstrable involvement in co-curricular, extra-curricular and/or community activities.

With a large majority of PwC's recruits coming from The UWI and UTech, Human Capital Lead Partner Paul Williams underscored how much the company values “this important partnership with these premier institutions”.

Expressing his views on the significance of the scholarship, McBean said, “The PwC Scholarship means a lot to me; it's important to be able to complete my academic endeavour. This gives me great motivation to do well, and it's good to know that people are out there who recognise good work. It motivates me to work harder and do my best. After my studies, I hope to start my career in public accounting as an auditor, because I believe it will provide me with a wealth of experience.”

For her part, Foster highlighted the challenge of funding her university career, even with the support of her family, and so is excited and grateful for this opportunity.

“It's not just another scholarship,” she stated. “The money is great, but the greatest achievement is to be associated with a firm like PwC. At school my friends and classmates think it is the ideal place to work. The internship has been great; the staff is there to guide you through, and I must say they are really accommodating. I'm able to apply what I learned in class. I'm so very grateful. The scholarship took the pressure off and will help me to get better grades.”

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