Navigate Up

 Internal Audit Case Competition

Annual IIA Atlanta Chapter Internal Audit Case Competition


The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA) Atlanta Chapter holds an Internal Audit Case Competition open to students (graduate or undergraduate) attending colleges and universities in the State of Georgia.  The Case Competition is held annually, each November. The first Internal Audit Case Competition (Nov 2011) was held at the Georgia State University Buckhead campus.  The event is now held on an annual basis at the Kennesaw State University Center which is also the location of the annual Student Day Event (held in February of each year).

The event brings together the top ten teams, selected as finalists, representing six to ten of the best accounting schools in the state of Georgia.  To participate, teams register and present a written case study solution to the three judge panel, in the hopes of being selected as one of these top ten teams that come to Atlanta for the event.  Competing students represent the best and brightest from across the state.  Each of the teams is composed of three members who present for no longer than 15 minutes on the given case, with five minutes allotted for the judges’ questions. 

Veterans in the internal audit industry have been very pleased with the performance of the students who participate in the Internal Audit Case Competition.  “If these students and their presentations are any indication then I think the future of the business profession is in very good hands,” said Paul Sobel, vice president of internal audit at Georgia Pacific and former Chairman of the Global IIA.  “I felt really good about the insights the students had and the way they grasped how to take IIA standards and apply them to real-life situations, which makes me bullish about the future of the industry.”

As the role of internal audit continues to shift and become more important to the overall business function there will be an increased demand for individuals with experience in the field. It is a goal of the IIA Atlanta Chapter to ensure that there are qualified individuals to fill those positions and the Case Competition helps fulfill that mission.  Through events such as the Internal Audit Case Competition, the Atlanta Chapter can expose and advocate for the internal audit profession while providing top students with real-world experience in the field. 

Today we are seeing internal audit play a more important role than ever before, as companies continue to face a touch economy.  “Internal auditing can help companies stay out of trouble and improve their business,” said Brian Lay, executive director of advisory services at Ernst & Young.  “Internal auditing can really help organizations at any stage in the business lifecycle, whether that business is getting better and growing or whether the business is trying to cut back, so it is a great profession to be in.”

During the event, students acquire real-life experiences in internal audit. In addition, the competition and luncheon provide an incredible networking opportunity for these 30 top accounting students. The students get the chance to meet and speak with many of the top internal audit executives in Georgia and many of the companies in attendance use the event to scout for future stars in the industry.

At the end of the competition the first place prize of $1000 per student is presented.  The first annual competition was awarded to the team from the University of Georgia.  Members of the team included Alexander Pirie, Eugene Kim and David Barker; Dr. Dennis Beresford advised the team.  There are second place and third place prizes of $500 and $300 per student.   At the Fourth Annual event (Nov 2014), a team from Kennesaw State University finished first.  Members of the team included Samantha Cowell, Natalia D’Aries, and Jeffrey Kochy; Dr. Rich Clune advised the team.


Winning Team (400x245).jpg

Winning team for 2014 from Kennesaw State University of the 4th Annual Case Competition, (l to r) Sam Cowell, Natalia D'Aries and Jeff Kochy with Bill Mulcahy, Chair of the Advisory Board of the KSU Internal Audit Center.

The IIA event would not have been possible without the support of all its sponsors.  Previous sponsors included The Intersect Group, Ernst & Young, Southern Company, Georgia-Pacific, Georgia State University, Idea Data Analysis Software, Frazier & Deeter, State Farm, UPS, SunTrust, NCR, Emory University, Grant Thornton, Dixon Hughes Goodman, Rock Tenn, Kennesaw State University and the IIA Atlanta Chapter.

The IIA Atlanta Chapter looks forward to next year’s event and with the help of its sponsors, plans to continue the Internal Audit Case Competition as an ongoing event.

Contact Fred Masci, Chair of IIA Atlanta Chapter Academic Relations Committee, at for more information.