Excelling in the Accounting Profession

Anthony Arun“Like father like son” may sound quite cliché however, for Anthony Arun it is anything but. Growing up with an Accountant father, Arun soon developed an interest in the field and it didn’t come as a surprise that followed in his father’s footsteps.

“Being an accountant, my father always encouraged me to pursue this field.”  So based on his father’s advice Arun took up accounting as one of his subjects in high school.   

Eldest amongst six siblings, Arun travelled around quite a lot as a child due to the nature of his father’s job. As a result, he attended a number of primary schools. To attain his secondary education, he attended Cathedral Secondary School in Suva before finishing high school at Rotorua Boys’ High School in New Zealand in 2009.

Immediately after high school, Arun started working for G H Whiteside and Co., Chartered Accountants as an Assistant Clerk. By this time, Arun was sure that he was going to be an accountant so he decided to pursue tertiary education in this field. He enrolled in the Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting and Finance) programme at the Fiji National University’s (FNU), College of Business, Hospitality and Tourism Studies (CBHTS) as an extension student. He graduated in 2017.

“I always found undergraduate student life more challenging as there was heavy study load and concepts were both theory and calculation based. I still remember having to run around looking for companies that were willing to allow us to conduct our assignments based on their company,” he said.

Arun continued with his study aspirations and a couple of years later, in 2019, he graduated with another qualification in his field – Postgraduate Diploma in Accounting.

“I began my Postgraduate studies in mid-2018 and completed by mid-2019 while being employed fulltime. During mid 2018 FNU was working on introducing a new programme, Master in Professional Accounting (CPA), which I was very interested in pursuing,” he stated.

Arun grasped the opportunity and is currently enrolled in the Master in Professional Accounting (CPA) programme at FNU.  He plans to complete this and obtain Chartered Accountant status by the time he turns 30 years old.

Arun is still employed at G H Whiteside Co., Chartered Accountants but has progressed from being an Assistant Clerk to Accounts Audit Supervisor over the years.

His role as Accounts Audit Supervisor primarily involves preparing financial statements, tax returns, providing assurance services and business advice for his clientele. He also manages a department which involves reviewing their work and assisting them.

Speaking about his current role, Arun said, “I find accounting and auditing intriguing particularly while furthering my studies and having first-hand experience at the same time. I am able to apply my further education to my practical experience, which helps broaden my knowledge even further.”

Arun’s advice to current students of FNU is to continue to put in their best efforts in their studies and learn as much as they can, not only in the class but also from the practical experience that FNU offers to its students.

To future students, Arun says, “as a student myself I would encourage you all to consider pursuing your studies at FNU as I have been with FNU since 2010 and I have seen so many changes and improvements in its services and facilities to benefit us students.”

Sharing his top three tips, he said, “In the beginning, most of us graduates are not able to find a job that we specialize in, my advice is not to give up. There is so much we can learn which will help us develop professionally and eventually get us into our field. Also develop a passion for your job and always perform to the best of your capabilities and you will be rewarded. Finally always maintain your professional integrity and FNU standards throughout your career.”

The accountancy profession is regarded as one of the most important occupational group in contemporary economy and society. Arun urged students to pursue what they feel comfortable in. He credits his success to his wife stating that she has always believed in him and continued to inspire him to achieve his best in everything that he did as well as his family.