School’s out for summer – what next?

Monday 8 July 2019

With an aptitude for figures and finance, Matthew Wright and Josh Ford took the plunge – respectively in July 2016 and July 2018 - and went straight from school into the accountancy training programme at Mapus-Smith & Lemmon. This July they are celebrating their professional progress at the firm’s Wisbech office.

So while this summer’s school leavers contemplate their next step, the ‘learn and earn’ option can present a feasible alternative to university.

Matthew Wright, who is now working on his Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) level four – the final stage, said: “I joined Mapus-Smith & Lemmon because I wanted a career that would last for many years and I had an interest in how businesses were run. I decided to join Mapus over other accountants because in the interview I liked how they came across and the direction the firm was going and I could see myself progressing within the firm and the fact they are willing to pay for my training to become fully qualified.”

Josh Ford, who is on AAT level two, said: “Throughout school my favourite subjects were maths and business so a career in the admin/financial sector appealed. I knew a few people working in the Mapus-Smith & Lemmon Downham Market office, near where I live, so from them I gleaned that I could gain experience of working in an office while at the same time gaining my AAT qualification which the firm is very generously paying for.”

Chartered certified accountant Helen Peak, who heads up the Wisbech office, said: “Our policy to help school leavers become qualified accountants is a very important part of the business. Mutual commitment between the trainees and those that train them gives great results all round. It gives the firm excellent stability, enhances services for our clients and is rewarding for those who qualify. Matthew and Josh are progressing well as technicians.

“Our training programme is a great opportunity for those who do not want the expense of going to university to gain a professional qualification and earn a salary while they do it. Once they’ve completed the AAT course, there is the potential to continue their education and train as chartered accountants or chartered certified accountants or if they wish to specialise in taxation then that option is available.”

In total, the firm has 16 trainees at various stages and has already recruited the current year’s intake. However, they are interested to hear from those who are considering an accountancy career. Work experience is available across the three offices in the summer and they would be keen to see some CVs in the spring.

For further information about trainee opportunities email Sharon Edwards at

Forthcoming Events

July 24 2019 6:00PM / 6.00-9.00pm
Fenland Quiz and Hog Roast
August 9 2019 2:00PM / 2.00 - 4.00pm
Summer Garden Party
September 2 2019 / 5.00-7.00pm
Informal Networking Evening – Huntingdon
September 4 2019 / 5.00-7.00pm
Informal Networking Evening – Stamford
September 9 2019 / 5.00-7.00pm
Informal Networking Evening – Ely
September 10 2019 3:00PM / 3.00-5.30pm
Meet the Neighbours - Stansted
September 17 2019 9:30AM / 9.30am-12.00pm
War for Talent: Recruitment and Retention - Huntingdon