05 May 2022 | Story Leonie Bolleurs
Prof Prinsloo and Minee van den Berg
Prof Frans Prinsloo and Mineé van den Berg. Prof Prinsloo believes the performance of the UFS graduates in the ITC examination confirms the quality of the Chartered Accountancy academic programme offered by the university.

The BAcc Honours and PGDip (Chartered Accountancy) graduates (2021) from the School of Accountancy at the University of the Free State (UFS) excelled in the latest Initial Test of Competence (ITC) examination of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA).

It was with great excitement that the school received the results that were released by SAICA. UFS graduates had an overall pass rate of 76% in this examination, comparing favourably to the national overall pass rate of 59%. 

Resilience and perseverance

“We are very proud of what our 2021 graduates have achieved. They excelled despite the very challenging circumstances of the emergency remote teaching environment in 2020 and 2021, and this outcome is proof of their hard work,” says Prof Frans Prinsloo, Director of the School of Accountancy.

He adds: “The performance of the UFS graduates in the ITC examination confirms the quality of the Chartered Accountancy academic programme offered by the UFS, as well as the strength of the learning and teaching model that is adopted by the school – which aims to add significant value in the development of Accountancy students’ knowledge and skills towards their qualifying as accountancy professionals. Moreover, these results are testament to the resilience and perseverance of our Accountancy students and the dedication of the staff of the School of Accountancy.”

What made the results announcement extra special is that two UFS graduates from the class of 2021, Lindi van Eyk and Mineé van den Berg, passed this challenging examination with distinction, ruling them as part of the elite group of 29 candidates nationally who passed with distinction – from 2 946 candidates who wrote this examination in January 2022.

Making a difference

Van den Berg, who was named the best honours student in the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, also obtained her honours degree with distinction. She received the degree during the recent April graduation ceremonies.

“It is an honour to be able to use and invest in God-given abilities and opportunities. I believe that consistency, a set routine, and faith made it possible to be successful in the exam.”

“My results in the ITC exam assured me that I have the ability to successfully become a chartered accountant,” says Van den Berg, who is currently doing her internship with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in Stellenbosch. She is hoping to complete her articles and pass the second qualifying exam to become a chartered accountant (SA), working both locally and internationally. From a young age, she enjoyed numbers and later found accounting to be the most suitable career field to live out her passion. “I believe that I can make a difference by working in an environment I enjoy,” she says. 

Hard work and consistency

‘Consistency’. This is the one word that Van Eyk uses to describe the reason for her success in the ITC exams. “From my first year studying BAcc, I was upskilling myself with the necessary business and global acumen. Following the advice of the lecturers, who do their best to prepare us to become professionals, consistent hard work is what made it possible for me to pass the exam with distinction.”

Van Eyk, who also passed her honours degree at the UFS with distinction, is currently employed by PwC in Midrand. She is still considering her options after qualification as a chartered accountant (SA), but she believes that her career opportunities will be endless.

Goal-driven and excited by the prospects of learning new things, Van Eyk also strives to be an inspiration to those who want to pursue studies in the field of CA(SA). She believes by persevering and not giving up on this long and hard journey, she will become the person that the world needs.

Prof Prinsloo also congratulated the other 53 UFS graduates who passed the January 2022 ITC examination, including a group of seven SAICA academic trainees who are currently completing the first year of their three-year training contract in the School of Accountancy.

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