Grant Thornton, TCU Office of Financial Aid prepare for annual financial statement audit


    The private financial firm Grant Thornton is collaborating with the TCU Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid in preparation for the university’s annual financial statement audit.

    Director of Scholarships and Financial Aid Mike Scott said the firm is paid each year to review TCU’s financial statements and ensure the university’s finances are in order.

    Scott said any entity receiving federal money is required to be audited every year.

    “It doesn’t mean that they’re auditing you because you’re doing something wrong,” Scott said. “It’s that you’re proving to them that you’re continuing to manage the programs correctly.”

    Scott also said the firm is responsible for confirming whether or not the university is playing by the rules.

    “There is a huge amount of federal and state regulatory requirements pertaining to how you manage and select recipients for financial aid and how you disperse the funds to the students,” Scott said.

    When the process begins, Scott said the firm’s primary task is to gather reports of all TCU students on federal aid and check for any oddities that may exist.

    “They’ll pull a random sample of 25 students in various programs,” Scott said. “Then they’ll send those back to [the TCU Office of Financial Aid] and say ‘these are the students we’ve selected to be reviewed.’”

    After choosing which students to review, Scott said the firm spends about a week on campus gathering information and processing their reports.

    If anything unordinary is discovered, Scott said the firm sends the information back to TCU for another review. He also mentioned this back-and-forth process usually continues for a few months.

    Once all the information is confirmed and the reports are completed, Scott said the firm meets with Cheryl Wilson, TCU’s controller and associate vice chancellor. He said at this meeting, both parties sign off on the audit.

    Wilson wrote in an e-mail the audit is also approved by the TCU Board of Trustees’ Audit Committee.

    The committee accepts the audited statements on behalf of the Board and discusses the results of the audit, including major issues regarding accounting and auditing principles and practices, with the firm, wrote Wilson.

    Below is a timeline regarding the audit.