The MIA International Accountants Conference 2018 was the ideal venue for MIA to recognise outstanding talent, through its MIA Islamic Finance Mini Pupillage Programme Certificate Presentation and the MIA Best Accounting Students Awards.
Held in the Premier Lounge, the certificate presentation for the inaugural MIA Islamic Finance (IF) Mini Pupillage programme celebrated pupils from large audit firms, regulatory bodies and Islamic financial institutions who had successfully completed the one-year programme. First launched in July 2017, the programme ran from August 2017 to September 2018 and comprised three modules: Module 1 – Training Sessions, Module 2 – Tutoring Sessions and Module 3 – Case Study Development. This programme was initially the brainchild of Dato’ Mohammad Faiz as the-then Chairman of the MIA Islamic Finance Committee, and it is now overseen by Prof. Dr. Maliah Sulaiman as the new Chair.
In her remarks, MIA CEO Dr. Nurmazilah Dato’ Mahzan said that, “MIA’s objective behind this mini pupillage programme is to enhance capacity and competency in Islamic finance by creating a pool of knowledgeable and highly trained accountants who will contribute to the industry. This is in line with our mandate of developing the profession in strategic sectors of national importance, where accountants can make a real difference to support nation-building.”
This IF Mini Pupillage programme is the first of its kind where participants benefit from a holistic exposure on diverse aspects of Islamic finance, including shariah, taxation, accounting and regulatory. Other than in-depth training, a highlight of the programme was the opportunity for participants to interact with leaders in Islamic finance to get a first-hand perspective on the industry in face-to-face knowledge sharing sessions on a wide array of topics such as shariah rulings, accounting and financial reporting for Islamic banks and takaful companies, sukuk, the history of Islamic finance in Malaysia, and Islamic capital market.
The Case Study Development module enabled the participants to contribute further to the IF body of knowledge by completing case studies in their area of interest. To promote knowledge sharing, MIA will compile and share these case studies on its communications and professional development platforms.
Dr. Nurmazilah noted that this programme exemplifies MIA’s approach of strategic collaboration, as it could not have come to fruition without the collaboration and support of all stakeholders in the IF ecosystem, such as the audit firms, Islamic banks and regulators.
Meanwhile, the MIA Best Accounting Student Award (BASA) has been going strong since 2008 to recognise and reward deserving candidates who have performed exceptionally well in both academic studies and curriculum activities. These candidates also serve as young role models for their peers, and will hopefully encourage more young talent to embrace the accountancy profession and build up the talent pool.
The BASA was first initiated by MIA in 2008 before MIA embarked on a joint collaboration with Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) in 2016. Under the joint collaboration, MIA will identify one candidate each from 17 universities recognised under Part I of the First Schedule of the Accountants Act 1967, based on criteria such as: academic performance, curriculum activities, and attributes such as soft skills, communication skills and leadership skills.
To celebrate their achievements and motivate them for further success, the BASA award winners received special fee waivers from ICAEW to pursue their ICAEW ACA programme as well as cash prizes, certificates of achievement, and plaques from MIA.