Sir David Tweedie CA: ‘Give back and change a life’
Sir David Tweedie CA, past President of ICAS and Chairman of the board of trustees of the ICAS Foundation, calls on CAs to consider the valuable support a donation to the charity would provide to a gifted student.
My father never knew his parents. He was fostered at birth by a large family in the mining community and left school at 14 to work in the local pit to assist with the family finances. He always regretted not going to university and made it his life’s ambition to ensure each of his three sons obtained a degree.
The memory of my father’s lack of opportunity comes back to me when I hear the stories of academically talented young people facing economic and social barriers to further education and needing a helping hand to gain a degree in accountancy and finance. The establishment of the ICAS Foundation as a separate, independent charity with its own trustees was the answer. It provides encouragement (“you can do this!”) and role models by assigning a CA as a mentor to each of our scholars and awards a bursary to alleviate the student’s financial concerns.
As an ICAS Member and a Chartered Accountant, you know the value of education. You, like me, and generally supported by our parents, were fortunate in being able to pursue our ambitions. The skills and tools you acquired studying to be a Chartered Accountant have enabled you to achieve goals that might otherwise have been impossible. Now it is within your gift to offer an academically talented young person the same challenge and opportunity.
Since awarding the first bursary in 2013, the ICAS Foundation has supported some 290 students to continue their education and to take their first steps towards a career in accountancy or finance. We know collectively we can do even more to support young people joining our profession and we need your help.
Support from the ICAS Foundation is life-changing
Receiving support can change the course of a student's life forever. Our Foundation students face significant barriers to further education, including low household income, challenging family circumstances, limited awareness of opportunities and living in areas of multiple deprivation. These students have the most to gain from university life, they also have the most to worry about financially if they get there.
What support do we provide students?
Undergraduate students receive up to £2,500 per year for the duration of their course, maximum funding is available for eligible students living in a household where the annual income is below £20,000. In addition to the funding, we provide a volunteer mentor, an ICAS Member who is in regular contact with the student and guides them through any challenges, personal or academical. We can also provide one-off grants in certain circumstances to help students complete their studies or begin their career.
Our support is much more than money – that is what makes the ICAS Foundation unique and something of which CAs can be proud.
Who do we support?
Secondary school students and college students who live in the UK and who are applying to study an accountancy or finance degree.
96% of students supported by the ICAS Foundation graduate with a First-Class Honours or Upper Second-Class degree. More than half go on to professional Chartered Accountancy training.
Why give to the ICAS Foundation?
To change lives for the better; your contribution is a gesture of affirmation and encouragement for the student who receives support.
The cost of further education is still out of reach for many students and their families in the UK. We need people from diverse cultural, ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds to bring their values and perspective to our profession. Through your generosity, you transform the life of an intelligent young person, who is brimming with potential, and who now will be able to access a university education and the prospect of a career in accountancy.
The student who receives support today returns the favour by becoming the ICAS Foundation donor of tomorrow. This is already happening with the first students supported by the Foundation now qualified as CAs and making a regular donation. Your gift can establish a chain of philanthropy that extends far beyond your lifetime. You can make a one-off donation or choose to support us regularly. Every gift makes a difference.
Please think about giving others the opportunities we were given to become a Member of this respected profession. My thanks to you if you have already donated or are considering donating. Reading some of our student case studies and hearing how the ICAS Foundation can change lives may be the only encouragement you need.
If you are able to support us, you can do so when completing your ICAS Annual Renewal or online at https://www.icasfoundation.org.uk/donate.It is quick and easy and lots of us doing a little could make a huge difference