BYU Accounting Teams Excel in National Tax Competition

A team of Marriott School undergraduate accounting students placed first and a team of graduate accounting students placed second at the 2007 Deloitte Tax Case Study National Competition — marking BYU’s seventh consecutive first or second place finish in the undergraduate division.

“Our accounting students have amassed an unequalled record of success,” says Steve Albrecht, associate dean of BYU’s Marriott School. “A BYU graduate or undergraduate team has placed first or second nationally for 11 of the past 12 years. That says a lot about the quality of our students, their solid preparation and the excellent coaching by faculty.”

During the competition, teams had four hours to strategically resolve tax problems for a corporation using only the Internal Revenue Code and Treasury Regulations as references. The competition, which was sponsored by the Deloitte Foundation, included a new requirement for teams to present one of their solutions to the judges.

“The BYU teams were able to respond to their questions on judiciary tax authority without having information about it,” says Brian Spilker, graduate team advisor. “Based on their responses, our groups demonstrated excellent accounting experience and preparatory research.”

During the preliminary round earlier this semester, both BYU teams competed against more than 30 other universities with only six teams in each division advancing to the national competition.

In recognition for the win, the Deloitte Foundation awarded the BYU undergraduate team $1,000 per student, and each graduate team member received a $500 award. In addition, a total of $15,000 was awarded to the school, which will partly be used to provide scholarships to accounting students of the Marriott School of Management.

Robert Gardner coached the undergraduate team, which is composed of Lauren Inouye, from Herndon, Va.; Justin Metcalf, from Joplin, Mo.; Paige Peterson, from Alberta, Canada; and Ryan Thorpe, from Mansfield, Texas. The graduate team members are Holly Barlow, from Sandy, Utah; Derek Judi, from Castle Dale, Utah; Nicholas Tobler, from Tempe, Ariz; and Derek Welling, from Corona, Calif.

Other winning universities include the University of Denver, which placed first in the graduate division of the competition and the College of William and Mary, which place second in the undergraduate division.

“Each of the national teams participating offered insightful responses to the complex case study and earned our confidence about the caliber of professionals that will be working within our industry in the future,” says Shaun Budnik, president of the Deloitte Foundation. “Our future is going to be in very good hands.”

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, public management, information systems and entrepreneurship. The school’s mission is to prepare men and women of faith, character and professional ability for positions of leadership throughout the world. Approximately 3,000 students are enrolled in the Marriott School’s graduate and undergraduate programs.

Media Contact: Joseph Ogden (801) 422-8938 or 787-9989
Writer: Irasema Romero (801) 422-5629