ACFE Foundation Scholarships Instill Confidence, Sense of Achievement


Lupe DeLeon, ACFE Higher Education Coordinator

Of the many programs and committees the ACFE is proud to be a part of, one still stands out from the rest at this time of year. As we reflect on a year of achievement and growth for our organization and our members, we remain focused on the future CFEs who will one day lead the fight against fraud.

The Ritchie-Jennings Memorial Scholarship was established in 1992 by the ACFE Foundation and is named after Larry Jennings, CFE, and Tracy Ritchie, CFE. Jennings and Ritchie were fatally wounded when terrorists fired upon their vehicle in Karachi, Pakistan on Nov. 14, 1997. The scholarship was then named in their honor and supports the education of collegiate accounting, business, finance and criminal justice students worldwide.

Anthony Sperduti is a past scholarship winner and a student at Post University in Connecticut. He attributes much more to the award than just a monetary incentive. According to Sperduti, he found confidence, a whole new world of networking and the motivation to pursue a career in fraud prevention and forensic accounting.

“The award provided much more to me than financial gain,” Sperduti said. “The feeling of achieving something of this nature will give anyone the confidence boost they are looking for. Not only that, it is a great resume builder, and gives the applicant the opportunity to network with CFEs. The application requires a letter of recommendation from a CFE, so it really makes the applicant build the confidence and go out there and network. It helps the applicant become known in the field of fraud prevention.”

This year the ACFE Foundation Board of Directors voted to increase the amount of scholarship awards available. There will be one $10,000 scholarship, two $5,000 scholarships, four $2,500 scholarships and 23 $1,000 scholarships. Other changes include a scholarship questionnaire in place of the essay, as well as the acceptance of “unofficial” transcripts.

The 2011-2012 scholarship schedule is as follows:

  • Application Deadline – Postmarked by January 21, 2011
  • 2011-2012 Scholarship Recipients Announced – April 15, 2011
  • Scholarships Distributed – April 30, 2011

To find out more information about the ACFE Foundation or the Ritchie-Jennings Memorial Scholarship, go here.