Pace University and Queens College students team up with IRS criminal investigators

Financial crimes meet savvy students as Pace University and Queens College students team up with IRS criminal investigators as “IRS Special Agents for a Day”

September 28, 2006

MEDIA ADVISORY

Contact: Bill Caldwell, Pace University, 212-346-1597, wcaldwell@pace.edu
Admission by press credential.

Financial crimes meet savvy students as Pace University and Queens College students team up with IRS criminal investigators as “IRS Special Agents for a Day”
Friday, October 13

WHAT: A business owner skimming from his company, a bar owner keeping a second set of books, an identity theft scheme, a drug trafficker, a constitutionally challenged “non taxpayer,” and a race track pari-mutuel teller kickback scheme. These are some of the hypothetical noir situations that will be faced by twenty-six students from Pace University and Queens College when they become honorary “IRS Special Agents for a Day” in a unique one-day program organized by the New York Field Office Criminal Investigation Division of the Internal Revenue Service. U.S. Postal Inspectors and uniformed NYPD Officers will assist with program activities.

This is the first time the program is being held in the New York City area.

Students are placed in groups, each with an experienced Special Agent who coaches them and provides learning points along the way. The Honorary Agents then must follow the paper trail. Their day long investigation may start with an anonymous informant, a meeting with local law enforcement, or even some garbage. The accounting students select their next steps in gathering evidence, usually leading them to potential witnesses, played by seasoned Special Agents, CPA’s, and other volunteers. Some of the students will utilize the tools available to federal law enforcement officers, including use of undercover, surveillance, subpoenas, and search and arrest warrants. At the end of their scenarios, the students meet as a group to talk about their investigation and receive an evaluation from their coaches. The payoff, says IRS organizer Joseph J. Foy, is students realize that investigating financial fraud is complex and requires strong accounting, organization and communication skills. They get personal learning experience dealing one-on-one with top-notch, professional IRS criminal investigators. This is where academia meets the real world.

WHO: Joseph J. Foy, Special Agent, IRS Criminal Investigation Division (212-436-1032, joseph.foy@ci.irs.gov) and Susanne O’Callaghan, Associate Professor of Accounting, Pace University’s Lubin School of Business (212-618-6410, socallaghan@pace.edu) are available for interviews about the program.

WHEN: Friday, October 13, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

WHERE: Pace University, One Pace Plaza (across from City Hall), New York, NY.