For some, the mere sight of taxes, balance sheets and percentages is enough to send them running away screaming, but for Francisca Atonga her passion for numbers has seen her become an award-winning accountancy student.
The 29-year-old, of Maylands, who left Africa for Australia just two years ago, was recently honoured with Challenger Institute of Technology’s prestigious International Student of the Year Award.
Francisca is studying an advanced diploma of accounting and hopes upon graduation to obtain full-time employment. She is also working part-time as an assistant accountant at the Australian Asia Association.
“My accountancy studies are fascinating, with the course focussing on practical and hands-on learning,” Francisca said.
“My studies at Challenger made it very easy to obtain employment, which complements what I’m learning in class. Through work and studying, I’ve gained the confidence to work in any area of accounting.”
“I was also humbled by my Challenger lecturers who nominated me for this award,” Francisca continued. “I’ve learnt so much from them and will put all that they have taught into good practice throughout my career.”
“I love helping motivated people to achieve their goals and my career in accounting will be a great way to do this,” Francisca continued.
“I also feel that it’s very important to engage with others and integrate into Australian life as, in my opinion, it’s one of the best ways to make the most of living in another country and learn from different cultures.”
Challenger Institute business lecturer Peter Kerr said his experience with Francisca throughout her two years of study had been one characterised by excellence.
“Francisca complements her sterling academic performance with delightful people skills,” Mr Kerr said.
“Francisca is able to draw on her Kenyan experience to enrich the class and this has had a positive experience on everyone’s learning. Francisca is a team player, a characteristic very much in demand by employers,” he continued.
“Francisca is determined to make something of herself in Australia and this inspires others to succeed.”