Embracing a new career and challenge with the Diploma

Following her A-Levels, Tyrone-native Donna Kelly, pursued a qualification and role in childcare before embarking on a new career as an Accounting Technician. 

“I enjoyed it immensely, but had always loved working with numbers and wanted to challenge myself further” says Donna who lives in Eskra.

“I started looking into local part-time accountancy courses. It has always been important to me to be able to work while studying. I came across the Accounting Technicians Ireland Diploma in a prospectus for South West College in Omagh and decided to enrol."

“The Accounting Technicians Ireland Diploma offers a good challenge and requires commitment, but it has been one of the most rewarding and fulfilling experiences I have had.”

To gain her two-years of relevant work experience as part of the qualification requirements, Donna started with the Omagh accountancy practice, McAleer Jackson Chartered Accountants, as a Trainee Accounting Technician.

“I am still with them, but now as a fully qualified Accounting Technician. I very much enjoy my work and the opportunities it presents. The Diploma has been a wonderful help. It gave me the knowledge, skill and understanding to progress.”

Donna admits that starting the role two and half years ago with very little knowledge of the practicalities of accounting was a challenge. Whilst working, Donna attended classes one evening a week with the college, but says she received full-time support.

“The tutors were fantastic and always there to help, whether in class or via email, even at the weekend. I found it really engaging, and most importantly, applicable to my job. The big plus for me was immediately being able to apply learning from the Diploma directly to my new role.

“Having been out of school for several years, and starting a new job and course at the same time, the learning curve was steep. But the Diploma for Accounting Technicians helped me become more confident.

“Having the Accounting Technicians Ireland Diploma on my CV is a great benefit. It is a highly recognised professional qualification which opens up career opportunities. I would recommend it to anyone interested in a career in accounting, whether you have just left school or are returning to education.”


The ATI Diploma for Accounting Technicians is recognised as the fastest pathway to a fulfilling and rewarding professional accounting career, and is available locally with colleges across Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

The Diploma is open to school and college leavers, mature students, and people working in business, industry or small practice but who, as yet, have no formal training.

The qualification opens a world of employment opportunities to graduates across a broad range of accounting and finance roles, and enables students to further progress to senior financial management posts.

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