Students take on forensic side of accounting in Douglas Millett case competition

Marc Feldman, Chris Ito, Faiz Surani, and Morgan Thomalla make their presentation
Marc Feldman, Chris Ito, Faiz Surani, and Morgan Thomalla make their presentation

“It’s like being a police detective without the gun.” That’s how one student described the work her team had been doing, shortly after participating in the inaugural Douglas Millett Forensic Accounting Case Competition in the Shriver Center on Wednesday evening.

Teams of senior accountancy majors in the competition were given a case study on the first day of the spring semester that focused on fraud prevention, detection, and/or investigation within a company. After analyzing their cases, plotting out their evidence, and compiling their recommendations, the teams presented to a panel of forensic accountants.

The team of Marc Feldman, Chris Ito, Faiz Surani, and Morgan Thomalla won first place and $4,500, while John Paul Bosse, Aspen Dosland, Chris Hackman, and Anita Zhao took second place and $2,000. The other three teams each received $1,000.

“My goal, when I graduate, is to be a CPA and to get my certified fraud examiner credential with it,” Bosse explained. “This was a great way to get some experience into what that may look like long term.”

“In classes, you think, ‘When am I ever going to use this? When is this going to apply?’ This was a firsthand experience where everything we learned was applicable,” Hackman said. “I was able to use information I learned in class, solve a case, and get experience in what it might look like going from a classroom into the real world.”

One of the competition’s judges, Amanda Malusky Krauss of Axium Consulting in Dayton, said she was impressed by the students’ work. “I thought every single student took this very seriously and they approached it in a very comprehensive and thorough manner. They took the case study they were given, read it, developed findings and solutions, and gave a clean and well-executed presentation summarizing what they found.”

See more photos from the case competition here