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Press Release

MSU Denver Students to Pursue White-Collar Criminals as IRS ‘Special Agents’

Contact: Tim Carroll, Office 303-556-5136, Cell 303-870-7705

Posted: April 25, 2013

‌(Denver) — Metropolitan State University of Denver brings the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation unit (IRS CI) tocampus on Friday, April 26, for an investigation workshop. Twenty five MSU Denver students will work with IRS special agents in an all-day simulated investigation of real-world white-collar criminal case scenarios.

IRS Adrain Project

MSU Denver students practice mock IRS investigations

Called the Adrian Project, the workshop offers the opportunity for undergraduate and master’s students studying accounting to solve cases dealing with fraud, money laundering and embezzlement. IRS special agents are required to have a certain number of accounting and business credits, as their job is to follow the money trail, which can be a convoluted track through business and financial records. The workshop runs from 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. starting in the Administration Building, room 145.

The MSU Denver campus will serve as a small city where the “honorary” special agents will conduct interviews, review financial documents, perform surveillance, carry out undercover operations and execute search warrants. In order to learn all aspects of investigation, students will present their investigative findings to a magistrate for review and feedback.

“The opportunity to apply practical, real-world experience while still in school is invaluable,” says Doug Laufer, MSU Denver accounting professor. “Our University is committed to applied learning and this program illustrates the blend of theory and practice. We strive to ensure that our graduates have the best possible training relevant to their profession and partnerships in the Adrian Project help foster their education further.”

Stephen Boyd, IRS CI special agent in charge for the Denver field office says that the partnership with MSU Denver and IRS CI gives students an opportunity to use their academic training in real types of investigations. “This is a win-win for everyone involved—students get practical experience, and we get to recruit the next generation of special agents for IRS Criminal Investigation.”

The Adrian Project was founded nearly a decade ago through a collaborative partnership between the IRS and  Adrian College in Michigan. The program is part of a continuing effort by the IRS to demonstrate the agency’s work in a way that people don’t typically think about it, says Boyd.

In March, College Measures and the Colorado Department of Higher Education released a report, “Higher Education Pays: The Initial Earnings of Graduates from Colorado’s Colleges and Universities Working in Colorado.”

MSU Denver first-year graduates with bachelor’s degree in accounting ranked among the top-earning graduates at universities statewide with a median first-year salary of $45,445—on par with IRS law enforcement officers entry-level annual salary of up to $43,000. Overall the report showed that the median, first-year earnings for an MSU Denver graduate with a bachelor’s degree was $38,547 compared to $36,777 for a CSU graduate, $37,735 for a CU Boulder graduate and $39,143 for a DU graduate.

Information about MSU Denver’s Department of Accounting and its master’s program in professional accountancy is available at A video of the University’s inaugural Adrian Project spring 2010 workshop can be viewed at More information about a career as an IRS special agent is available at:


About the Department of Accounting

The Accounting Department at Metropolitan State University of Denver produces graduates who have a broad array of skills and knowledge relevant to their entry into the accounting profession. The department boasts the largest undergraduate accounting program in Colorado and produces graduates who consistently exceed national averages for CPA exam performance. The department also offers a master’s degree in professional accountancy. Taught by highly experienced instructors with varied backgrounds that range from public accounting to private industry and the government sector, the master’s program curriculum exceeds current industry standards.


About Metropolitan State University of Denver

MSU Denver is Colorado’s best value in high-quality education. With 23,000 students, it is a leader in educating undergraduate Coloradans and enrolls the highest number of students of color among the state’s four-year colleges. The University offers 55 majors and master’s degrees in accounting, teaching and social work. It boasts more than 74,000 alumni, most remaining in Colorado after graduation.