More than 75 students from 16 Wisconsin high schools converged on Lakeland College Monday for the second annual Forensic Accounting Competition.
This year's event focused on the infamous Koss embezzlement scandal in Milwaukee, and the eventual arrest and incarceration of Sujata Sachdeva.
Taking home first place was the Plymouth High School quartet of Michael Bolland, Drew Schweiger, Tessa Woelfel and Jaryd Larson. Monroe was second for the second straight year, Oregon was third and Greendale took fourth.
Also participating were teams from Chilton, D.C. Everest, Edgerton, Franklin, Kohler, Lake Mills, Manitowoc Lincoln, Menomonee Falls, Middleton, Milton, Oconto and Port Washington.
Highlighting the full day of presentations was a talk by FBI agents Jennifer Walkowski and Brian Due, who discussed the case and showed the students slides of merchandise former vice president of finance Sachdeva purchased with some of the $34 million she embezzled from Koss.
When the FBI agents showed slides of jewelry worth five figures, the students gasped in amazement.
The panel of judges included high-level employees from top local companies, including Acuity, Community Bank & Trust, Johnsonville and Kohler Co. Another of the judges represented the Internal Revenue Service.
Walkowski said she enjoyed seeing the students' presentations about what went wrong, why and how this disaster could have been avoided.
"I am very impressed, I have to say," she offered.
"Today was just great," said Bob Martin, instructor of accounting. "Being a good accountant means being able to communicate information. Tell me the story. That's exactly what these students did very well today."