Wake Forest School of Business Accounting Team Tallies Win; Heads to Nationals

11.28.2013 General, News Release, School News, Strategy

Accounting students head to PwC’s 11th National xTREME Accounting Case Competition

WINSTON-SALEM, NC – Five Wake Forest University School of Business accounting students have earned a trip to the national finals for the PwC 11th Annual National xTREME Accounting (xACT) Case Competition.

Senior Daniel Dent, junior Sarah Chin and sophomores Brian Brett, Iliana Smalanskas and Stephanie Sullan will travel to New York City January 2-4, 2014. Only 25 students from five schools earned all-expense paid trips to the national finals.

The PwC xACT Competition is an annual event that challenges and enhances students’ accounting, auditing and general business knowledge. More than 4,000 students from 85 of the nation’s top accountancy programs competed in this year’s campus competitions.

“The competition made me realize how much accounting and financial knowledge sustains the continual expansion of our business market,” said Sarah Chin (’15). “Each person who participated in this competition was able to use what they have learned at Wake Forest to create a proposal for an investment that is very similar to what is really going on in today’s market. Wake’s program is providing students with the best knowledge and resources to really make a difference in the world.”

In addition to sharing a cash prize of more than $11,000, the Wake Forest team will participate in workshops at PwC’s national headquarters, present their case recommendations to a panel of national firm partners and attend a Broadway show.

The other schools participating in this year’s national finals are the University of Arizona, the University of Washington and Villanova. A fifth school will be selected based on student online voting.

Teams in the xACT competition are presented with a series of complex accounting, strategy and marketing questions facing U.S. firms. They present their case to PwC audit managers and partners. This year the teams outlined a strategy for how a U.S. oil and gas firm could reduce its carbon footprint while enhancing its profitability, an exercise based on a real-world issue facing this industry.

According to PwC, during the 2013 fall season, 90 schools from across the country competed in the Challenge, which includes xACT and xTAX competitions. PwC launched the competition in 2002 to increase students’ exposure to professional services in the world of public accounting. Since then, the competition has grown substantially with some 35,000 participants and nearly $3 million in prize money awarded.