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Cliodhna O'Connell

Trainee Accountant, PwC
I would encourage all law graduates to speak with college alumni and undertake internships to determine what interests you, explore the culture of different organisations and identify what opportunities various firm’s can present

Degree subjectBSc Law & Business(TCD)
Job titleTrainee Accountant
Employer PwC

My name is Cliodhna O’Connell and I am a 2nd year Trainee Accountant and Chartered Tax Advisor with PwC. I studied Law and Business in TCD and then went on to complete the MSc Law and Finance programme at Oxford University, specialising in tax law.

As the leading professional services firm both in Ireland and Internationally, PwC stood out to me for its reputation at the forefront of business. Taxation is arguably the lynchpin in every business decision and plays a critical role in society. The rules have their foundation in legislation and are constantly evolving whether through the annual Irish budget, case law, international or European influence – much to the intellectual satisfaction of law graduates who will find an abundance of opportunities to leverage their analytical and critical thinking skills developed through college!

What appealed to me

I completed PwC’s Summer Internship programme during my penultimate college year where the selection process from start to finish was very enjoyable and immersive – it involved an informative breakfast in PwC’s impressive Spencer Dock offices with other applicants and current employees followed by a face-to-face interview and short case study. There were opportunities to meet with employees at various levels, frequent communication from the firm throughout and an office tour. The firm’s International network and long-established graduate programme enable the Irish office to deliver state-of-the-art industry training, top-class exam support and unrivalled business development opportunities.

My daily work

I’m based in the financial services tax department which to date has enabled me to engage on a mix of tax consultancy and compliance projects with clients across the insurance, asset management and banking industries. My work ranges from calculating the tax liability for an International insurance company with branches in various jurisdictions to creating tax efficient global fund structures for large investment houses. Our department offers plenty of partner and client contact, exposure to different teams, the opportunity to use your initiative from the get go and bring your opinion to the table.

There’s a huge social element at work with regular events organised across each graduate intake and also amongst your department. The facilities on hand are no doubt amongst the best in the city – delicious canteen, 24-hour gym, fitness classes and 3pm Friday finishes during the Summer months – all combine to facilitate a sustainable work-life balance!

With over 2,300 employees across our 7 Irish offices, there are opportunities for everyone ranging from tax, audit and advisory, company secretarial, human resources to business development and marketing. Whatever your longterm career aspirations, the technical and industry knowledge acquired on the job, along with the firm’s farreaching alumni network will assist you in achieving your goals. I would encourage all law graduates to speak with college alumni and undertake internships to determine what interests you, explore the culture of different organisations and identify what opportunities various firm’s can present!