Student Spotlight: Dipti Pathre

On April 17, 2018, in Student Profile, Uncategorized, by Walker News

Dipti with Dean Simone Cummings and fellow members of Viva the Yoga.

“My parents always say that unless you step out of your comfort zone and try new things, you will not realize what limits you can conquer, but make sure you always remain grounded so that you can think rationally in any given situation. Your attitude always defines your altitude.” – Dipti Pathre.

 

Dipti Pathre is excited to walk across the graduation stage to receive a diploma in Masters in Forensic Accounting this May. To get to this point, she traveled across the world to pursue a degree that would allow her to follow her passion. Dipti has worked hard, shown leadership, and contributed to so many students’ experiences at Webster. The Walker School is proud to share her story in this Student Spotlight.

In India, Dipti’s career ambitions led her to approach the National Defense Academy to join the Indian Air Force in aeronautics. While the Academy was impressed, she was turned away due to her inability to meet the education requirements. Dipti used this minor setback as motivation to always use education as an asset to propel her to achieve her goals.

After earning a professional certification in Chartered Accountancy (CA) from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India along with an undergraduate degree from the University of Mumbai, Dipti felt she was far better situated to apply for a challenging job. Dipti applied her education to a four-year internship with Ketan C Kothari & Co. Accounting Firm. While working at the firm, Dipti learned about various industries such as banking, manufacturing, retail, and banking depository services.  She enjoyed what she was doing, but was still in search of her calling. In her next job at RSM Astute Consulting Services Limited, Dipti was placed on an internal audit project that allowed her to trace red flags missed by Human Resources. The project was a pivotal point in her career, as she finally found her passion for fraud investigation.

Dipti expanded her skills working on fraud investigations at Axis Risk Consulting Services Private Limited – A Genpact Co.  This experience inspired her to go back to school. Because India did not offer the type of degree that she desired, she was led to Webster University, the only school in the United States that offers a MS Degree entirely in Forensic Accounting. She made the decision to move across the world, and start a new journey at the Walker School. The move also had an incentive, she would be closer to her brother, who was already living in the United States.

Dipti celebrating with friends in a traditional India sari.

The move to a new country, in conjunction with starting school again, was a very stressful experience that she remembers clearly. In her traditional fashion, she did not allow her nerves to prevent her from getting involved and making the most of her time at Webster University. Dipti excelled at finding ways to improve the student experience. Her list of commitments at Webster is expansive and includes: member of the Indian Student Association and Webster Wellness Committee, treasurer of Webster Table Tennis, co- chair of the Delegates’ Agenda Committee, International Connection Leader, Graduate Senator for the Student Government Association, and volunteer with the Webster Alumni Association. In addition, Dipti started her own club, Viva the Yoga and co-founded the Graduate Student Association alongside alumna Dina Sallam’17.  She also works as a student building manager of the University Center and an office assistant at the Academic Resource Center.

Dipti with Dr. Beth Stroble, President of Webster University

Dipti’s outstanding contributions to the university and its students was formally recognized in the fall of 2017 when she received the Dean of Students Service Award for Leadership. Dipti too has benefited from her involvement, and reflects on the lessons learned: “It has been an amazing experience at Webster, I’ve connected with many people and got to understand cultural sensitivities. I thought the culture of India would be different, but there are a lot of similarities which is fascinating. We are all the same, it’s just the languages that are different.”

Dipti accepts her Association of Certified Fraud Examiners scholarship award from Professor Rich Dippel.

Dipti has earned distinction as a well-rounded student, with noteworthy academic achievements in addition to her student leadership. The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners sponsored a competitive scholarship for Forensic Accounting Students. Dipti’s credentials made her the clear choice to receive the scholarship. Rich Dippel, her professor, awarded her the scholarship at a Walker School event earlier this year. He said, “Dipti has always been a great student, academically excelling at any project, assignment or goal she takes on.” Dipti plans to use the scholarship to help complete her examinations to become a Certified Fraud Examiner.

With almost 8 years of work experience and a Forensic Accounting degree under her belt, Dipti’s dream of becoming a Certified Fraud Investigator is closer than ever. While the job market is open, she anticipates difficulties with immigration, or relocating to places like Washington DC or New York. However, she is determined to achieve her goals.

Based on her own experiences, Dipti offers advice to other international students:  “I noticed that if you come here from another country, if you are willing to learn something new, just be opened minded and try to understand the cultural differences that we have. Some things we misunderstand, and ego issues comes up. Try to be yourself and make sure that your intention is not to harm something. Be yourself and enjoy the experience of coming to a foreign country and studying new things.”

She also offered her thanks: “I would like to thank my family, friends and work buddies around the globe to make Webster a memorable experience to cherish for lifetime!”

Webster University introduced the Forensic Accounting graduate program five years ago. Today, students like Sean Ayres are graduating from the program, and landing incredible jobs. Sean was offered a job at Grant Thornton, one of the largest and fastest-growing audit, tax and advisory service providers in Chicago.

Sean’s college education began at Webster University when he pursued an undergraduate degree in Accounting. During that time, Sean got involved by participating in on-campus events and the Student Government Association as the Secretary. He also noted learning some valuable communication skills as an undergraduate as a bartender at Llewelyn’s.

In the classroom, Sean enjoyed his time in the auditing course with Professor Rich Dipple. Dipple soon became his mentor, and the combination of advice, natural skill, and interest in the subject led his to pursuit of a MS in Forensic Accounting.

Dipple is very proud of his student and described him as someone who is sharp and has perseverance. Dipple is very proud to see how Sean has moved ahead but not surprised, saying, “[Sean] stuck to it and always had a mature approach.”

Sean valued his time at Webster University. While he did not study abroad, he said the global perspective he gained from getting to know international students and their culture in conjunction with the campus culture enriched his college experience. Sean is appreciative of his liberal arts degree, it helped his ability to critically think and he says, “Webster was a place where people could be themselves.”

Sean will now have the opportunity to travel with his new job. Since he gained an international perspective at Webster University, the anxiety of international travel is shed and he could not be more excited for the new experience.

Finally, Sean’s advice to students is to talk to professors and get to know them; they are valuable resources. He encourages students to take advantage of the opportunities available at the University in order to reach full success, saying that his experiences are proof of that.

Sean now resides in Chicago with his wife and their dog. Sean is working alongside a group of Webster University alum in the beginning process of making an official Webster University Alumni Association Chicago Chapter. He’s is excited about the potential of the network for future and former students.

The Walker School extends a congratulations to Sean. We are proud to call him an alumni and wish him the best in his future.

Forensic Accounting Speaker at the Walker School

On January 28, 2016, in Events, by Walker News

forensicspeakergraphic2016On Monday, January 25, 2016 Webster welcomed former U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri, Mike Fagan as the featured speaker for the fifth annual joint meeting of the Greater St. Louis Area Chapter of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) and the Webster University Forensic Accounting program. Fagan’s presentation was titled Funding of Terrorism and Other Threats to Homeland Security.

Fagan spoke to a crowd of over one hundred, including ACFE members, Webster University students, faculty and other members of the community, about the funding of terrorism both in the United States and in other parts of the world.  He discussed several sources of terrorism funding including the potential for online gambling as a growth area for such funding.

Fagan, who served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney (AUSA) for the Eastern District of Missouri for twenty-five years and now consults on domestic and transnational criminal law and procedure, counterterrorism, intelligence, and emergency planning issues.
The Forensic Accounting program at Webster is the only program of its kind in the state of Missouri. Curriculum includes courses in criminal and civil investigation, legal procedure, forensic analytics, cyber forensics, substantive law, valuation, economic damages, internal auditing and risk management. For more information visit webster.edu/forensic-accounting.

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Frank S. Perri

Join us at the Walker School for renowned criminal attorney Frank S. Perri’s lecture, “Leadership, Organizational Deviance and Corporate Fraud Risk Factors.”  This presentation will be held Thursday, April 23 from 6-8 p.m. at Webster University’s East Academic Building, 545 Garden Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63119.  The event is sponsored in partnership with the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners – Greater St. Louis Area Chapter #105 (ACFE).

RSVP to attend.

About the Lecture:
In “Leadership, Organizational Deviance and Corporate Fraud Risk Factors” Perri will discuss fraud risk factors that apply to an organizational setting.  Topics covered include: individual criminal thinking patterns displayed by offenders, deviant leadership traits and strategies leadership utilizes to perpetrate their frauds.  In addition, the consequences of a compromised control environment, also referred to as the “tone at the top”, will be examined by reviewing social psychological dynamics such as corrupt corporate cultures, the impact of groupthink mind-sets, hierarchical power structures and their influence on employee behaviors that facilitate corporate fraud.  This lecture will also explore how board of director responsibilities are compromised, the challenges in overcoming organizational deviance and potential mitigating factors that may reduce the incidences of corporate fraud.  Diverse examples such as Enron, WorldCom and others will be used to give anti-fraud professionals a model to analyze organizational deviance.

About Frank S. Perri, JD, MBA, CPA, CFE: 
For more than 20 years, Frank S. Perri has worked as a criminal trial attorney.  His research interests include: the behavioral profile of white-collar criminals, red-collar crime, fraud-detection homicide and organizational deviance issues.  He has published more than 30 peer-reviewed articles in accounting, legal and psychology journals.  In addition he has lectured to various organizations including the Illinois CPA Society, American Accounting Association, American College of Forensic Examiners, Institute of Internal Auditors, International Association of Financial Crimes Investigators, the University of New Mexico and the Wisconsin Homicide Detectives Association. Perri received his law degree from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

 

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A Master’s Degree Forensic Accounting: Smart Move.

On December 17, 2013, in Announcements, by Walker News

Give yourself a competitive edge with a master of science degree in Forensic Accounting from the George Herbert Walker School of Business & Technology. It’s the only graduate degree program of its kind in Missouri, combining accounting, auditing and investigative skills.

The program curriculum includes courses in criminal and civil investigation, legal procedure, management of evidence, cyber forensics, substantive law, valuation, economic damages and internal auditing.  Graduates of this program will be well prepared for a career in this interesting mix of accounting, investigation, valuation and law known as forensic accounting.

Webster University’s master’s degree in forensic accounting is designed for the adult professional with convenient evening classes offered one night a week.  Learn more and apply today!

Forensic Accounting

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By Vincenza Previte
Walker School of Business

Students, faculty and professors at the Dean’s Welcome Back Reception Friday Aug. 17 at the East Academic Building. Andrea Lobert attended the event.

As the economy worsens and unemployment rises, many may think twice before quitting their full-time job to go back to school. Not Andrea Lobert. Two months ago Lobert quit her job at Michigan’s accounting and business consulting firm Brickley DeLong P.C. to pursue a master’s degree in Forensic Accounting at Webster University.

“I got to a point where I had to decide if that job was what I wanted to do or if I wanted to go a different direction,” the former senior accountant says.

She chose the latter.

After researching different jobs online she realized the competition was stiff and that she needed to pursue a master’s degree in forensic accounting before getting a job in that area.

Lobert says Webster stood out because compared to the other universities she researched it was one of the few that offered a master’s program solely on forensic accounting. She moved to St. Louis as soon as she was accepted into the program.

“Many people I know have been amazed by the fact that I had the guts to quit a secure, full-time job,” Lobert says. “But I just had to take steps to do a job I really liked.”

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