Lia Hay

BAcc (Hons) CA CTA


  • Degree
  • Accountancy at the University of Dundee
  • Location
  • Dundee

I would urge any student who is considering whether a summer placement is worthwhile to apply as I have found it to be the most rewarding and helpful experience so far, whilst at university.

Where and what did you study at University?

I studied Accountancy at the University of Dundee.

Why did you choose to apply to EQ Accountants to undertake an internship?

I came across the EQ internship application on the ICAS website. The firm was one that I recognised the name of as I have lived locally all my life and most importantly heard good things about. Unlike other applications which specified they were for tax interns only etc, EQ did not specify or departmentalise. I thought this suited me best as I wished to try out a wide range of work to help me with my decision of which path to follow after university.

What is a normal day like as an intern?

Honestly, there is no such thing as a normal day. Every day is different, which is what I enjoyed the most about my internship experience. I was given the opportunity to work in multiple areas whilst at EQ including accounts preparation, taxation and audit. There are so many different jobs available to try, it makes your days interesting and the time flies by.

What did you enjoy most about being an intern at EQ?

If someone had told me that I would prepare a full set of accounts whilst I was on placement, I never would have believed them. This to me was probably the most rewarding part of the experience. It was nice to see how what I was learning in university was applied in practice.

Aside from my working achievements, my time at EQ was made even more enjoyable by the people who work here. The office is a very friendly and sociable place and it is clear to see that everyone here cares about one another.  During my time here, we had office lunches to celebrate exam successes and I greatly appreciate being asked to come along as it made me feel included as part of the accounting team.

What did you find the most surprising during your time as an intern with EQ?

Auditing in practice surprised me as from my time at university, I had previously dismissed auditing as everything I had covered on the area was very dry. Getting to experience practical audit work and not just reading it from a textbook has completely changed my mind.  This to me is the greatest advantage of getting to work in a firm that is not completely departmentalised.

What 3 qualities do you think a student looking for an internship needs to have if they are to be successful?

  • Enthusiasm – I think it is so important to show a willingness to learn. Don’t be put off trying out things you have never worked on before. If you ever get stuck, everyone in the office is more than happy to help you out.
  • Patience – It can be overwhelming when you are faced with working on your first job and you may feel like you have no idea what you are doing. It is amazing how quickly you pick things up and your confidence builds so much during your time here.
  • Good Communication – I think it is essential to show that you are not afraid to ask for help when stuck. The job also requires good communication so that those also involved in the job that you are working on are aware of how you are getting on with the task.

Do you have any advice for those interested in applying for our student internship vacancies this year?

I would urge any student who is considering whether a summer placement is worthwhile to apply as I have found it to be the most rewarding and helpful experience so far, whilst at university. I only wish that all my peers had the same opportunity to work in practice as I have. My time here has really cemented my goal after university to become a Chartered Accountant and has made me consider also thinking about undertaking the CTA qualification on top of that.