Students Place at Deloitte Competition

PROVO, Utah – Jan 25, 2016 – A team of Brigham Young University accounting students earned a top honor at the national Deloitte FanTAXtic Case Study Competition, taking home the third-place prize and $5,000 in winnings.

“I really enjoyed being able to work with such smart, hardworking individuals in a very tough competition,” says Ren Ruiz, a second-year MAcc student from Houston. “I believe that everyone's positive attitude and willingness to help each other, especially during the stressful times, enabled us to remain strong throughout the competition.”

A total of 72 teams competed at the regional level of the competition before nine went on to the national competition held at the Deloitte campus in Westlake, Texas. Finalists were asked to tackle two issues-based case studies that required teams to engage in simulation exercises advising a hypothetical company. Students then made presentations to Deloitte professionals recommending solutions based on their knowledge of tax laws and practices.

“The team performed extremely well addressing very difficult tax and financial accounting issues,” says Robert Gardner, BYU School of Accountancy professor and the team’s faculty adviser. “It was rewarding to watch them work together enthusiastically as they continued to develop their professional and personal skills.”

Under the student leadership of Ruiz, the prize-winning team of sophomores Joseph Castro from Rexburg, Idaho, and Keana Mortensen from West Hills, Calif., and seniors Michele Gray from West Jordan, Utah, and Danielle Johnson from Henderson, Nev., each won a $500 share of the third-place prize. An additional $2,500 was awarded to the BYU School of Accountancy.

“I feel like our team worked hard and each of us put forth our best effort,” Castro says. “We were able to work cohesively as a team and make the best of our individual and collective strengths.”

The Marriott School is located at Brigham Young University, the largest privately owned, church-sponsored university in the United States. The school has nationally recognized programs in accounting, business management, entrepreneurship, finance, information systems and public management. The school’s mission is to prepare men and women of faith, character and professional ability for positions of leadership throughout the world. Approximately 3,300 students are enrolled in the Marriott School’s graduate and undergraduate programs.

From left: Professor Robert Gardner, Ren Ruiz, Joseph Castro, Keana Mortensen, Danielle Johnson and Michele Gray.

Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Kasee Bailey