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PwC Challenge

An annual case competition focused on high-level issues to test and improve decision-making skills.

Every November, PricewaterhouseCoopers invites about 50 schools nationwide to compete in PwC Challenge. The winning team from each school receives a cash prize and is invited to compete nationally to become one of five finalist teams. The five finalists are then invited to make their presentations at PwC’s New York office.

Each team is made up of five students, who work as consultants for a fictitious client. They have two weeks to research an assigned accounting issue and develop a 12-minute presentation. Each team is assigned a faculty coach and a PwC mentor. On the day of the competition, each team presents its analysis and recommendations to a panel of judges from PwC.

2015 Competition

The winning team, Be Audit You Can Be.

The PwC Challenge presentations were held Oct. 30, 2015, at the UB School of Management. Twelve teams of accounting students made their presentations in the Jacobs Management Center. Students acted as accounting consultants to help a firm use data analytics in a new gaming project. In all, 60 students competed.

Congratulations to the winning teams: 

  • Team Be Audit You Can Be won the top prize of $1,000. In addition, the team's presentation video was sent to PwC's New York office for the national competition, which included almost 50 other schools. Participating on the winning team were Marley O’Donnell, Emily Wheeler, Kudakwashe Kaseke, Abidul Alam and Hnu Draper. Michael Dambra, assistant professor of accounting and law, served as faculty coach.
  • PWCVP, the second-place team, also won $1,000. Team members were Shane Kim, Young Sun Hong, Ryan Dunn, Maxwell Aikin and Thomas Jost. Professors Alex Ampadu and Arlene Hibschweiler served as faculty coaches.
  • Team Analytical took third place in the competition. Team members Brian Lau, Westin Moreno, Thomas Baldinger, Trevor Riegle and Justin Riegle were coached by Professor Feng Gu.

After the presentations, all participants enjoyed a catered dinner and networked with PwC staff. In addition, all participants received a gift card.

Congratulations to the students and coaches who took on the challenge in this year’s event. Mark Bruno, head of recruiting for PwC in Buffalo, and other firm staff were very impressed by the School of Management's showing.