Students Attend Annual ASC Conference

Posted on 10/31/2016 12:51:06 PM

On October 22, 2016, students from the Eberly College of Business and Information Technology attended the annual American Society for Competitiveness conference. In attendance was House Ways and Means Committee member and IUP alumnus Jim Renacci (R-OH).

Renacci gave students an excerpt of his past, starting with his attendance at IUP, followed by receiving his CPA, becoming a successful entrepreneur, and securing multiple terms as a state representative of Ohio. Students were given advice about leveraging their educational experiences and setting out to put their skills to work. A heavy focus was set towards a theme of developing competitive advantage—a necessity given the nature of the current labor market. Renacci suggested this as a reality which students must face head-on and be prepared to successfully overcome, given their educational capital.

Renacci, sitting on a subcommittee for tax reform, also took the time to promote his new tax plan. Such a program, as described during his keynote speech at the event, suggested a removal of all corporate income tax. Instead, Renacci described a policy “approved by economists on both the left and right” which would institute a single-digit, credit-invoice, value-added tax (consumption tax) on corporations and businesses. Such a “simplification of the tax code” would align the U.S. towards competitiveness within the global market and incentivize companies to migrate operations back into the U.S., Renacci said.

Despite rhetoric, there is some criticism from both sides of the aisle regarding a general VAT tax, but the extent of such disagreement, if any, within this specific plan is up for debate. 

Overall, IUP students were granted an excellent opportunity to hear from a businessman-turned-politician with ample private and public sector experience. Students learned of the opportunities which lie ahead, and the competitiveness of the market in which they are about to enter. Lastly, students had a taste of historically revisited tax policy, which would make a great place for student extracurricular study.

By Robert Schwartz