While some of her peers are busy following fashion trends and are perhaps in a state of confusion as to what to do with their lives, at 21 Christiana Opare is already a qualified Accountant.
And, as if that is not enough, Christiana is also a Level 400 student of the University of Ghana Business School where she is majoring in Accounting and studying hard so that she can grab a First Class degree, come this July.
Many are those who find the undergraduate experience daunting, not to talk about studying for a professional qualification along with the degree programme.
Christiana’s story is an inspiration that good things come to those who dream big and work assiduously to make their academic dreams come true.
Just before the Easter break last week, a bird whispered to The Mirror that there was a young lady who had blasted all the three arduous levels of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) examinations.
As a result, The Mirror decided to fish Christiana out and, lo and behold, she confirmed the amazing story.
Basically, the internationally recognised ACCA qualification proves to employers that the holder has competence in all aspects of Accounting.
It is the largest and fastest growing Accounting qualification in the world, with over 500,000 members and students in 170 countries.
Gaining that qualification is evidence that the holder possesses skills and knowledge which are in high demand by employers in industry, banking, auditing, consulting, as well as other professions such as taxation and law.
In fact, the ACCA professional qualification is of a high standard and equivalent to completing a full university degree. Globally, it is a passport to mouth-watering job prospects.
Therefore, one may wonder what Christiana is still doing at the university with this mega professional qualification.
In an interview, the unassuming but quick-witted lady conceded that some of her mates usually asked her varying forms of the same question:
“Christiana, why won’t you leave this degree and go and seek employment with your ACCA? You are wasting your time here.”
According to her, most accounting firms require that a prospective employee has a first degree as a complement to the professional qualifications.
That is the reason she has decided to finish off her degree in Accounting, even though she has a professional qualification under her belt.
Asked how she was able to achieve all that in less than two decades of her life, she said after her West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), she decided to try her hands on the level one of the ACCA while she awaited her results.
She sat for the first set of three papers in June 2010 and she passed. In December that same year, she registered for two more papers but was able to write only one because “the ACCA examination clashed with my end-of-semester examination at the university”.
She explained that that was a sobering reminder that she had to work on her university and ACCA objectives concurrently.
Despite those challenges, she did not give up and registered for the outstanding papers in the subsequent years and within four years completed all the 14 papers to qualify as a Chartered Accountant.
Now all Christiana needs is a position in an accounting firm where she can work for 36 months to enable her to satisfy the working experience aspect of the ACCA.
Then she will be operating as a full-fledged Chartered Accountant.
A glance at Christiana’s academic background explains why she is flying at this height, as she clocked 10 grade ones in the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) at the Kwegyir Aggrey Memorial School at Gbawe in Accra.
With that blue-ribbon performance, she gained admission to the Wesley Girls’ High School in Cape Coast where she studied Business and in the WASSCE she bagged seven A1s and a cool B2.
Christiana was born to Mr David Opare, the Deputy Operations Manager of the Gateway Services Limited, and Mrs Regina Opare, a teacher, on April 4, 1992.
She is the first of three siblings and comes from Dawu in the Eastern Region.
Apart from her nuptial knot with her books, she loves to sing and so she is a devoted member of the National Union of Presbyterian Students (NUPS-G) and the Levites Choir.
Christiana, who is not the ‘anti-social’ type, said, “I love to go out with my roommates to unwind whenever we are not academically tight.
Besides, I also love to assist some of my mates who have difficulty in solving certain accounting problems because I believe it is good to share knowledge with people.”
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