How This Chartered Accountant Won a Beauty Pageant
Sharing the journey of Sharon Rodrigues, CA Final Student from Aurangabad, Maharashtra, India.
She won Miss India 1st Runner-Up Award Dellywood and Miss Aurangabad title while pursuing her Chartered Accountancy. And all this started after she won Miss WICASA.
She encourages all Chartered Accountant students to participate in WICASA and various other associations of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI).
“I cleared my CA Final Group1 in Nov’17 immediately after winning Miss India 1st Runner-Up Award Dellywood. I am also a Commerce Graduate and pursuing my M.com,” says Sharon Rodrigues.
“Recently I also cleared - Insurance Professional Exams of Licentiate and Associate membership conducted by Insurance Institute of India which has an international recognition (Associate membership qualifies the candidates for insurance surveyorship. One year articleship is required under a senior surveyor in order to get IRDA license to act as Surveyor and Loss Assessor, which I am pursuing under my dad who is a senior surveyor and a Chartered Accountant).
I decided to pursue Chartered Accountancy (CA) as my career after my grade 10. My Dad is a practicing Chartered Accountant and I have always looked up to him as a source of inspiration.
Looking at my Dad inspired me to become a Chartered Accountant.
Since my Mom is a beautician and runs her own beauty clinic I always had an inclination towards beauty and fashion as well.
As you can see I am blessed to be raised up in a family where my sister and myself were always given the freedom to make our own decisions.
Our parents always stood rock solid and supported us in our every decision.
My elder sister was a sportsperson, represented our country at the International level in Wrestling. She was also a National player in Judo and Basketball. She is MBA Marketing and now in her own export business.
CPT, IPCC, and Articleship
I cleared my CPT (1st level CA exam) in my 1st attempt.
After that, I started preparing for CA IPCC.
I successfully cleared CA IPCC (2nd level CA exam consisting of 2 groups, Group 1 and Group 2) and joined my dad's firm as an articled assistant.
During my articleship, I started taking an active part in WICASA (It is an association which provides Chartered Accountant students a platform to learn, share, participate and perform).
For the year 2014-15, I was elected as the Treasurer of Aurangabad WICASA.
During Youth Festival of CA students, I took part in Miss WICASA 2014 Contest and worked hard to get through all the rounds - Introduction, talent, G.K, situational and Judges Q&A round.
I was groomed by my mother for the same and I won the title of 'Miss WICASA'.
I was highly appreciated for my performance by everyone.
After that my interest in the Fashion field increased. Later on, just for fun, I took part in many Fashion Shows, Short Films and Anchoring while doing my articleship.
I did not take any professional training in the fashion field because CA has taught me how to self-study, how to be determined, how to stay focused and confident towards my goal.
It might sound funny but the ups and downs in CA do transform one and makes one stronger, any CA student would agree to the same.
Coming back to my journey, I independently worked hard and found out my own strengths and weaknesses and improved it.
I had decided to join a coaching class for CA Final exams (last level CA exam which consists of 2 groups, Group 1 and Group 2).
Now managing articleship with classes and fashion shows seemed very difficult. I was also very clear that CA is my priority so I took a break from my fashion career for a year and concentrated wholly on my CA Final classes.
During this one year, I attended CA coaching class and studied simultaneously along with my articleship.
After my coaching was done I started to manage both the fields simultaneously - CA Final studies and my fashion career.
The year 2017 was life-changing for me. I got an opportunity to participate in Miss Aurangabad and Dellywood Mr & Miss India.
Now the twist is I also had my CA Final attempt in Nov’2017.
Now leaving CA was never an option for me. Education is highly recognized in the society it gives one another level of self-worth and especially CA.
As mentioned above, since I had completed my CA Final coaching class I was well aware of the subjects and the portion. I knew that if I put in 3 to 4 months of solid studies I could easily be prepared for Nov’17 CA Final attempt. Also since I had dedicatedly done my articleship training I knew a lot of concepts due to practical exposure.
So I decided to prepare for Miss Aurangabad, Dellywood Mr & Miss India Contest and CA Final exams as well.
Won Miss Aurangabad and Dellywood Miss India 1st Runner 2017:
The year 2017 was a life-changing year for me.
I started preparing for Miss Aurangabad contest.
My mom groomed me for the ramp walk, makeovers, dressing and communication skills. My sister is a very good dancer so she choreographed my dance for all the contests and when it came to general knowledge my extremely talented dad helped me a lot.
In nutshell, I was trained by my family. I am really blessed to have such a supportive family.
I won Miss Aurangabad title and it was a proud moment for us.
I thought of taking this forward and participated in Dellywood Mr & Miss India Contest which was to be held in June'17 at Madh Island, Mumbai (got to know about this contest through the newspaper!).
I enrolled for it, gave my auditions in Mumbai and got selected in the auditions for the semi-finale and finale of Miss India.
There were around 8000 girls all over India who gave the auditions and only 200 got selected.
We had so many rounds like photoshoots, swimsuit, with makeup, without makeup, introduction, talent, G.K., Jury Q&A. We had grooming sessions with the top professionals in the fashion field. There were T.V. celebrities who judged us for the finale.
I was confident enough because I was well prepared and my parents also accompanied me to Mumbai. Though I was not allowed to meet them in spite of living in the same hotel it gave me a boost that at least they were nearby.
I gave my best in every round and reached the semi-finale. On the semi-finale day, I won the state title of Miss Maharashtra 2017 and entered the finale.
Believe me, winning Miss Maharashtra was a very big challenge for me as there were many participants from the State of Maharashtra, especially from the glamour city Mumbai, all well groomed and professionally trained!
On the finale day, I met my parents took their blessings and got ready for the big day.
I won the title of Miss India 1st Runner Up 2017. I also won the Miss India Best Personality title.
My life changed from that day. Now I am known as a celebrity.
When I came back to my city I was surrounded by the media and so many near and dear ones. I was overwhelmed by this gesture.
CA Final Nov’17 attempt
After all the competitions I started preparing for my CA Final exams in Nov’17. I got many movie offers but I focused and got back to my studies of CA final.
CA has always been my 1st preference. When it came to the 3 months of studies before the exam, I did not take any modeling contracts and was out of all the social networking sites as I did not want any distraction (though in any modeling career it is very important to stay updated).
During those 3 months of CA studies, I only knew that I am a CA student. I had decided to pursue all the extracurricular activities only after my exams.
All my hard work and dedication paid well.
I cleared my CA Final Group 1 in the Nov’17 attempt scoring 74/100 in SFM and 59/100 in Audit. I also scored 53/100 in Law through self-study only!
My advice to all
- Many people told me that you cannot manage both the careers together. Some also suggested that I should leave Chartered Accountancy. But their advice hardly mattered to me and my family. I used to hear and leave their pieces of advice then and there. I only needed the support of my family and they have always stood by my side. Today the same people take me as an inspiration.
- Only I know what I can do and what I cannot. Nobody knows you better than yourself
- Along with CA or any professional course one should pursue other extracurricular activities as well. Doing so will keep our mind healthy and we will never feel depressed.
- So if you have any other goals pursue the same - It is YOU who needs to understand and analyze your priorities. God has gifted us with unique talents we have to just find what is best in us. If you we do things that we love we will never feel depressed!
- Always work hard with dedication, determination, and interest towards your aim in life
- When I am in my field of modeling people are surprised to hear that I am also doing CA. But I strongly believe that if you love what you do then you will always be happy.
- I urge all the CA students to be active in associations like WICASA, it surely helps in overall growth– she concluded.