Nottingham graduates are off to a flying start

| 20/07/18

A collaborative degree programme between Nottingham University Business School, PwC and the ICAEW, has produced its first cohort of graduates. 

The Flying Start degree programme is an innovative course aimed at people who want to become ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) Chartered Accountants. 

The BSc Accountancy degree is a four-year programme sponsored by PwC and overseen by the ICAEW. 

Whilst studying at Nottingham University Business School, students on the course learn technical and theoretical accounting skills, with lecturers who are experts in their field and experienced practising accountants. A series of paid work placements are also built into the course, which means undergraduates get to apply the technical theory they’ve learned in the workplace. 

Graduates are able to claim an enhanced level of accreditation in the ICAEW qualification examinations, as well as being likely to be offered a job at senior associate level with PwC after they graduate. 

The programme has just produced its first batch of graduates – and 24 students collected their degrees on Wednesday 18 July as part of the University of Nottingham's summer graduation 2018 - they have all been offered positions at PwC. 

Mubeen Uppal, 22, is one of the graduating students this year. He said: "I was planning on doing financial accounting and management, or an accounting-related degree and when I was told about the course at a university fair, I was extremely interested and obviously the allure of having PwC on your CV was an extremely important factor for me.  

"In the second, third and fourth year, for one semester - we'd be on placement in a PwC office. I was at their Aberdeen office. I was lucky as I was able to forge really close relationships with some of the managers, directors, and even the partners there. I was even lucky enough to travel to Paris whilst I was there, to work on the biggest client Scotland has ever signed.  It was an incredible experience in terms of understanding the different working cultures in different countries.   

"The placements are challenging as PwC expects high standards, but although you work hard – they do reward you.  It was a steep learning curve but so valuable and I've taken a lot from it, which has been really good and I feel prepared for my career now." 

Throughout their degree students are supported by a network of staff from both the Business School and PwC. They earn a competitive salary, and have some of their living costs supplemented as well as paying reduced university fees.  

Professor James Devlin, Dean, Nottingham University Business School, said: “This programme is an important and exciting collaboration. We’re delighted to offer a truly integrated learning experience, which is enhanced by our unique global presence and perspective. Our students benefit from world-leading academic insights from Nottingham University Business School, as well as leading-edge professional practice from time on placement with PwC and working in partnership with ICAEW. We’re delighted to see the first graduates from this innovative programme and we are truly impressed by their achievements. We will be watching their progress with great interest.”  

Alison Breadon, PwC Government & Public Services Leader based in the Midlands said: “I am delighted to see the very first group of Flying Start students from the University of Nottingham graduate, marking an important milestone in their lives, and for PwC. We very much look forward to welcoming them back to PwC in the autumn, following a number of successful placements with us and to now continue their careers with us in accounting and professional services. 

“The Flying Start programme, which has the unique blend of work and study is an excellent way for our firm to develop the best local talent, the skills that students learn on the paid work placements with us are extremely transferable, which means they will be able to work anywhere in the business.  Students on the programme will get to meet our world-class clients and work alongside our highly skilled teams, fully supported by our teams at PwC. 

“I’ve been so impressed with the calibre of the students that we see graduating from the University of Nottingham and I wish them every success in their careers with us.” 

To find out more visit, or contact Nottingham University Business School on:0115 846 7599 or email

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Lucy Buckham

Media Relations Manager, Midlands, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44(0)7718 979 841

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