A student team from the University of Portland was named champions of the American Institute of CPAs’ 2013 Accounting Competition, winning the $10,000 award to be split among them.

A team from Santa Clara University claimed second place and a $5,000 award while students from the University of Southern Indiana earned a third-place prize of $2,500.

The competing student teams submitted a financial plan for fictional 24-year-old James, providing guidance for controlling his finances and paying off his debt.

The 15 teams selected for the semi-finals then created videos of their plan for the next chapter of James’s life, now married to a wife pregnant with twins.

The three finalists received an expense-paid trip to Washington, D.C., to present their plans for James’s retirement to a panel of judges and participate in a question and answer session.

The University of Portland team’s winning presentation suggested investment options for the couple throughout their life, estimated retirement income and overall net worth, and suggested various options for their estate and steps they could take to reduce their tax burden and secure their children’s financial future.

“I was impressed with both the quality of the team’s submissions and their ability to present their well-thought-out financial plans to the judges,” stated Rich Caturano, immediate past chairman of the AICPA, who announced the winners in Washington, D.C. “Americans are looking for this type of well-reasoned, holistic planning advice as they contend with uncertainty and complexity in their lives. Increasingly, they are turning to CPAs as their trusted advisers, who help them navigate a wide array of financial issues.”

The University of Portland team, dubbed the Competitive Pilot Accountants, were:

  • Martin McMahon (Captain)
  • Tyler Desmarais (Member)
  • Ingrid Nelson (Member)
  • Michelle Siegal (Member)
  • Ellen Lippman (Faculty advisor)

For more information about the competition, fully funded by the AICPA Foundation, or to watch the video submissions, visit www.ThisWayToCPA.com.

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