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SXU's Graham School of Management Holds Second Annual Case Competition


Saint Xavier University's (SXU) Graham School of Management (GSM) held its second annual Audit Case Competition in October. The competition consisted of two teams made up of seven students who perform an audit risk analysis of a public company. The case involved significant issues that students must analyze to determine the potential audit risks for taking the company as a client.

This year, students analyzed Ford Motor Company. They worked diligently to prepare for the case, attending a specially-designed lecture series by GSM faculty. The business school curriculum helped students to develop skills in accounting, financial analysis, competitive strategy and professional writing and communication. A week prior to the competition date, each group submitted a professional report to judges. At the case, students gave 40-minute presentations of their findings and recommendations. After, they had an opportunity to practice networking skills and meet with the judges.

The team of judges consisted of professionals from companies like PriceWaterhouse Coopers, Ally Financial and Lukas Law Firm. GSM students who participated in the case included Nareen Bustami, Roxette De la Isla, Elizabeth Gonzalez, Andrew Klimczak, Sarah Marszewski and Gina Snyder.

Alexander King, Ph.D., director of the Accounting Program for GSM, helped organize the competition along with Regina McNally, Ph.D., and Nia Westbrook, an accounting student. "Through other educational opportunities in which I have been involved, I have seen the benefit of case competitions. These competitions place students in real-world situations where they have to struggle with large, unstructured problems. Students must use all their skills to address the issues of the case: data gathering and analysis, teamwork skills and written and oral communication. In addition to providing an excellent anecdote for interviewing, these case experiences help bridge the gap between the classroom experience and the beginning of their careers in accounting," said King.  

Nareen Bustami, an accounting student, found the event important and enjoyed being able to network with the professional judges. "There are many different opportunities that can come from being able to network with these judges, like internships. I have never taken an audit class before, so it was an experience that I thought was very informative and educational. It was good practice to present in front of a group of people and it helps me understand how to become a better presenter," said Bustami.

By giving students hands-on experience both in and out of the classroom, GSM seeks to prepare students for competence and career success in the business world. SXU looks forward to watching GSM students continue to transform into business leaders.