Aaron GreenAaron Green

I left school set for Bristol University to take a course in Theoretical Physics and Extended Maths, certain that this was my aspiration, but upon arrival became somewhat disillusioned with the quality and amount of teaching I was receiving and was very aware of the vast amount of student debt my peers and I were getting into. This is not to dissuade anyone who has a passion for going to University. However if you're looking to start making your mark in the world right from the very first moment you leave school, I think that other paths like the one I took may be better suited to you. During my first year of University I applied for an apprenticeship with a big 4 accountancy firm called Deloitte, got the position, dropped out of University and started at Deloitte the following September. During my apprenticeship I have been studying for a level 7 (equivalent to a master's degree) qualification in Accountancy, Audit and Business. I will qualify as an ACA chartered accountant, a qualification that I have since learned through dealing with many clients and big businesses all around the world, is internationally recognised and very sought after. Whilst having fees to gain such a prestigious qualification paid for me by the firm is already a huge perk (avoid that student debt.) by far the biggest perks have been the range of clients and movers and shakers I've been able to meet with, and working with a very high calibre of people, from 19 year olds who have turned £10,000 into £200,000 by investing, to other colleagues who have property portfolios, or go on to be senior finance directors at other companies.

I have had the chance to work with many clients from all different industries and parts of the world, travel all over the country (some of my colleagues have travelled to other countries as well) and I have been backed in my own personal professional development, developing real world knowledge and skills that completely remove the limits on my future, allowing me to move forward doing whatever seems exciting to me. My medium term aspirations for when I qualify fully are to go and work in the Japan office on secondment (moving and living in the country and working in the office there for a short time) and get experience working with Japanese clients, my longer term goals are to return to a high calibre University (like Cambridge) to study Japanese and East Asian Studies (by this point I'll be able to pay my own way through University as a practicing accountant), where I can get more to grips with the politics and economic policies of the East, and then to work in the foreign office, aiming to maybe one day become the British Ambassador in Japan (but let's take things one step at a time, that all might change in a year).

Finally, don't worry if you're not the top of your class or the best in your field yet, you have time and you shouldn't let that limit your passion. I was by no means a superbly remarkable student and yet since leaving school I have improved and developed to a place where even outlandish dreams feel within reach, sometimes people just catch up later."