SUNY wins Long Island College Accounting Challenge

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Now that the third Long Island College Accounting Challenge is over, it's time to recognize the competition, celebrate the victors, and start planning for next year.

Students of The State University of New York (SUNY) at Old Westbury emerged victorious for the second time in three competitions.

“It was pretty fierce competition; it was neck and neck for a while. It was another successful event. The students were very excited. We are always amazed at how well they can answer the questions,” said Tracey Segarra, director of marketing for originator/sponsor company Margolin, Winer & Evens LLP (MWE).

Preparing the students for the event was one of the first steps for participating schools.

“Two accounting faculty members, Prof. Leibowitz and Prof. Koumbiadis, and I worked closely with our team of accounting students to prepare them for the challenge", said Ganesh M. Pandit, Associate Dean of the School of Business at Adelphi University. "We periodically met with them, made them comfortable with the format of the contest, and reviewed various accounting topics with them. It was an enjoyable experience for all of us involved in the process.”

There are new schools and new sponsors already looking forward to participating in upcoming events. The location of future competitions is now open to all of the competing schools to bid on hosting the event. This year's competition was held at Adelphi University for the first time.

“They have a beautiful new performing arts center, so we held it in the auditorium there. We had students from the schools and the professors and families come to cheer everyone on,” Segarra told AccountingWEB.

Adelphi University had the responsibility of being the host school and coordinating the various aspects of the event.

“We had to hold two planning meetings earlier this year with the people in charge of the Concert Hall, the Promotion and Outreach Office, the Office of Public Affairs, the Conference Services Office, and, of course, the representatives from Margolin, Winer and Evens LLP, the sponsor of the event,” said Pandit.

“During the meetings, each party clearly understood its role in the overall process and offered suggestions to the others as to how the overall event could be made highly successful", Pandit told AccountingWEB. "From that point until the day of hosting the event, all of us were in periodic contact with one another, keeping [each other] informed about how the preparations were moving. However, I would say that the overall preparation for the event was handled very collaboratively and enthusiastically by everyone involved.”

While being the host school is a large commitment, it also boasts many benefits. The students have a home-team advantage of familiarity with the facility. It also is a great marketing opportunity to showcase the school's faculty, student body, and facilities to the greater community and potential future students.

The benefits to all of the students who participate also are substantial. They get to demonstrate their knowledge to potential employers, represent their school, have the experience of speaking and competing in front of a crowd, and network with accounting students from other schools. They also had the opportunity to work on a real-time collaborative project.

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