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BYU student earns top score on national auditors exam

This December, John Montgomery will graduate from Brigham Young University with not only a master in accountancy on his resume but also the highest student score on the Certified Internal Auditor exam.

Montgomery received the highest score worldwide out of students sitting for the May 2004 exam. Only 18 percent of the 9,400 professionals and students who sat in the twice yearly exam in May passed.

"He is one of the most determined, hard-working students I've ever known, which says a lot given the caliber of his peers in the accounting program," says Monte Swain, Deloitte Professor of Accountancy at BYU. "This achievement is a credit to his determination, work ethic and intelligence."

Montgomery took the Certified Internal Auditor exam in May 2004 in anticipation for his planned December 2004 graduation from the Marriott School of Management. While CIA certification is not required to practice accounting, it is the recognized professional credential for internal auditors worldwide. Montgomery says the certification offers more opportunities for advancement within a firm. Upon graduation, Montgomery will be working with Ernst & Young in Washington, D.C. He believes his best preparation for the exam was his BYU classes.

"I may have received the top score award, but it was the accounting professors who deserve recognition. I simply used what they taught me," Montgomery says. "It's kind of like making cookies. If your mom teaches you how to make good cookies and practices with you, eventually the cookies you make on your own are good because of what your mom taught you. My exam results reflect the mentoring I received from my BYU professors."

The first CIA exam was administered in August 1974 to 654 candidates in the United States. Today, the exam is offered in 13 languages. In May 2004, more than 9,400 candidates took the exam at 228 sites in 78 countries around the world. More than 47,000 professionals have been certified through the Institute of Internal Auditors since the inception of the program.

Writer: Cari Thomas (801) 422-1512

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