Economics major Nicholas Boyes ’13 placed third among more than 180 entrants in this year’s statewide Student Writing Competition sponsored by the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA).
The writing competition was open to accounting and business majors attending Pennsylvania colleges and universities, along with Pennsylvania residents who attend college out of state. The topic is set annually by PICPA and the students are provided with guidelines and instructions for submission of their respective papers. According to PICPA’s website, “the competition is designed to encourage students to research and write about issues impacting the business environment.”
As the third-place winner, Boyes received a cash prize of $1,200.
Boyes’ winning paper was titled “The Failure of Legislation in Deterring Fraud.” It examined why cases of fraud are still so prevalent and analyzed the effectiveness of legislation on the deterrence of fraud. Boyes found the topic interesting because of its implications on the larger business world.
“The things that I found most interesting about fraud were its pervasiveness and its effect not only on the economy, but also on individuals,” he says. “After researching fraud statistics and legislation, these two interests contributed to my focus on fraud deterrence, or rather the lack thereof.”
The paper was an assignment for the Financial Theory and Analysis course taught by Rose Marie Bukics, Jones Professor of Economics and chair of international economics and commerce.
“Professor Bukics’ Financial Theory class was one of the most challenging classes I have taken at Lafayette, but it was also the most rewarding,” says Boyes. “There were multiple times where I was able to draw directly upon what Professor Bukics had taught us in class and incorporate it into my paper. She holds all of her students to a very high standard, and I feel as though this paper is merely a reflection of the work ethic she instilled and the expectations she placed upon us as students.”
Bukics says, “The benefit of participating in this writing competition is that it is research into real-world happenings. This raises student awareness that the world is not black and white and that even though someone is a professional, it doesn’t mean that they would not commit acts of fraud when in the workforce. Thus, it also raises their awareness of ethical issues that many face in the workplace.”