My JC Path: Growing my own way on a summer internship

Abbie Dickson

Abbie Dickson

Audit Assistant

03 February 2023

This year Abbie Dickson will be graduating from the University of Strathclyde with a BA (Hons) Accounting and Economics degree, before starting a new adventure as part of Johnston Carmichael’s Audit team. Luckily, she won’t be walking into the unknown – last year, Abbie undertook an audit internship in our Glasgow office, which gave her a fantastic opportunity to get to know her colleagues, our clients, and what to expect in a full-time graduate role.

As a campus ambassador for Johnston Carmichael at Strathclyde Uni and with a completed internship under her belt, Abbie knows better than anyone the benefits of these experiences. She’s shared her insights and advice here.

Developing key skills

During the summer of my penultimate year at university, I had the incredible opportunity to complete a 12-week audit internship at Johnston Carmichael, based in their Glasgow office. I had become motivated to apply to Johnston Carmichael after hearing about the invaluable experience gained by another student at my university who had participated the year before. Much like her time at Johnston Carmichael, my experience was fulfilling and exciting, offering the opportunity to use my learning from university in a practical setting and to work alongside a fantastic team. Johnston Carmichael prides itself on being “a place to be yourself and not a number” and my experience of working there was precisely that. Throughout the summer I felt fortunate to be gaining experience in such a positive, ambitious and dynamic work environment, where I was afforded the opportunity to develop crucial skills for a career in audit. 

My internship was structured and organised, but also flexible, providing a realistic insight into the day-to-day life of a Johnston Carmichael employee. I felt supported by my team immediately, receiving training on my first week, which helped me understand the processes and software used to complete an audit. Once completed, I was then able to work with teams across the firm, including a week spent working directly to the Audit Quality Review Team. This allowed a great insight into both the client facing side of auditing and the internal review processes – both of which fascinated me.

Getting to know colleagues and clients

I was trusted to engage externally with clients from an array of sectors, allowing me to gain confidence in building meaningful professional connections. I was able to improve my knowledge of each business and their industry, which is where it really struck me that the variety of experience within Johnston Carmichael is truly endless. I particularly enjoyed the onsite visits, setting the job apart from a regular office job as I was able to visit different places and engage with clients directly – which felt particularly enjoyable after two years of a pandemic where I had become accustomed to a world of Zoom tutorials and lectures!

Rotating across different teams during the twelve weeks helped me to fit in seamlessly across the firm, with each team incredibly patient and happy to take the time to explain tasks – ensuring I had the required context to complete projects. Colleagues valued my role and took my position seriously, allowing me to take on work at the same level as a new graduate. I was afforded the responsibility of completing tests and then discussing them one to one with clients, providing an excellent preparatory step for a future career in audit.

I was able to improve my knowledge of each business and their industry, which is where it really struck me that the variety of experience within Johnston Carmichael is truly endless.

The office was sociable and friendly at every level; senior managers would engage in conversations and were very welcoming. It was also helpful to work alongside the new graduates and understand their roles. Social events such as end of month drinks, a trip to the races and team lunches fostered a strong team ethos, bringing everyone closer and contributing to the productive and dynamic work environment at Johnston Carmichael.

An opportunity not to be missed

I would encourage anyone interested in a career in audit to apply to the Johnston Carmichael internship. It offers a unique chance to work in a high performing team and firm, as well as the good fortune of spending each day amongst colleagues willing to support and encourage your own professional development before you graduate. I am extremely grateful for my time spent at Johnston Carmichael and am very excited to join the team again in the summer of 2023 as a graduate.

Applications are currently open for our 2023 summer internships. To find an opportunity you can make your own, visit our Careers page and apply now.

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