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Accounting Students Win Deloitte’s Regional Audit Competition

Accounting Students Win Deloitte’s Regional Audit Competition
Back row (left to right): Hayden Lienemann, Grant Turner; front row: Rebekah Birch, Natalie Sneed, Samantha Karr and Sydney Sackmaster.
A team of University of NebraskaLincoln College of Business accounting students won the Deloitte Audit Innovation Campus Challenge regional competition held on November 14 in Minneapolis. Advancing to the national competition in April, the five-member team competed against ten other universities to take the top honor.
Deloitte's annual competition gives students the chance to apply their knowledge by solving audit problems they'll likely encounter in the real world. With the support of faculty advisors Dr. Steven Hegemann and Jill Trucke, the Nebraska team presented strategies to harness new opportunities for audit firms in a constantly-evolving business landscape.
“The opportunity enabled our students to look at the auditing profession and auditing beyond the financial statements. The students envisioned how Deloitte could use new technology to extend the information provided to a wide range of stakeholders,” said Hegemann, assistant professor of practice in accounting.
The Deloitte challenge statement prompted students to consider why auditing firms have a unique position to provide assurance services that could enhance the credibility of information companies publish or use in marketing, such as environmental responsibility claims like the use of organic ingredients and product origin. Students were asked how auditing firms can use data analytics, visualizations and advanced technologies to deliver such assurance services in the most effective manner.
Following the presentation to the panel, team members responded to follow-up questions from the judges. Their interactive presentation resonated well with judges.
“The judges said our team offered a creative solution and they presented well. Our team interacted well with each other and they directly engaged the judges during the presentation and the question and answer session. It demonstrated every student equally participated and complemented each other well,” said Trucke, assistant professor of practice in accounting.
The winning team members who will compete in the national competition in April include:
  • Rebekah Birch, junior accounting and secondary business, marketing and information technology education major from Burwell, Nebraska
  • Samantha Karr, junior accounting major from Hastings, Nebraska
  • Hayden Lienemann, junior accounting major from Sidney, Nebraska
  • Sydney Sackmaster, junior accounting major from Grover Heights, Minnesota
  • Natalie Sneed, junior accounting major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota
  • Grant Turner, junior accounting major from Portland, Oregon.
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Published: November 20, 2017