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Algoma U responds to fraud charges laid against former employee

Friday, December 14, 2012   by: Staff



Statement from Algoma University President Dr. Richard Myers re: alleged fraud

SAULT STE. MARIE - Earlier today, Sault Ste. Marie Police laid charges against Cynthia Jacobs, a former employee of Algoma University for embezzling $391,454.82 from the University over a period of seven years.

The University initiated an investigation earlier in the year, which led to an admission by the employee.

The University terminated her employment on October 25.

The file was turned over to the police for investigation immediately thereafter.

Since most of the money was taken in previous years, there is little impact on the University's current operating budget.

As a public body that derives most of its operating revenue from student fees and government operating grants, the University takes very seriously its fiduciary responsibility to manage that revenue properly.

New leadership in the financial department initiated the investigation, and the institution is now adding an additional staff position, as well as enhanced controls, to prevent similar problems in the future.

The University is also taking all reasonable steps to recover as much of the money as possible.

About Algoma University

Algoma University offers a wide variety of liberal arts and sciences degree options including programs in Psychology, Computer Science, Business Administration, Fine Arts, Community Economic and Social Development, and Biology in Sault Ste. Marie, Brampton, Timmins and St. Thomas.

As a partner with Shingwauk Kinoomaage Gamig, Algoma U is committed to respecting Anishinaabe knowledge and culture.

Algoma University has launched its Essential Elements Campaign to expand its campus and offer more scholarships and awards to students.

To learn more, visit


Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
Just Curious 12/14/2012 5:45:12 PM Report

Dude,she's 53,how much you figure she'll make in a year? The days of the silver dollar are long gone,never mind the fifty cent piece...
Just Curious 12/14/2012 5:48:16 PM Report

So now this new employee they have hired to keep an eye on the first position is gonna make 300,000 over the next 6/8 years. What,pray tell,are they saving???
the coach 12/14/2012 5:58:50 PM Report

Wow, give em another $100 big ones, they have everything under control. Wow.
Ricatoni 12/14/2012 5:59:23 PM Report

Beej: A very educated answer and your nickname pretty much sums up your mentallity.... LOL......get a life........
Beej 12/14/2012 6:03:04 PM Report

Bite me, Pasta pooch!!
Resident 12/14/2012 6:10:25 PM Report

Just Curious: She'd probably make lots of money considering the men? who troll places like Albert St. E!!
Slick Nick 12/14/2012 6:10:32 PM Report

ThinkAgain 12/14/2012 7:09:32 PM Report

PUC will just have to fork over another 100k to compensate
molder2 12/14/2012 7:10:39 PM Report

l need some more Lube please...l`m running dry...
Working Man 12/14/2012 7:21:09 PM Report

I'm guessing she was some 'financial controller'. She's probably highly skilled, but after this fraud she might have a hard time finding a job.

This kind of stuff happens all the time in the financial industry. It's just too bad 'she' got caught.
Prrrrrrr 12/14/2012 7:22:42 PM Report

Beej 12/14/2012 6:03:04 PM Report

Bite me, Pasta pooch!!

OMG...too funny!!!!
Sam C 12/14/2012 8:42:31 PM Report

JC... but if she hadn't been caught, the amount could have been much, much more.
KMF61MCF 12/14/2012 9:17:54 PM Report

That's really so sad to bad she wasn't Management maybe they would have just hushed it under the Carpet and sent her on her way.
Jazz10 12/14/2012 10:23:47 PM Report

She signed all my financial aid documents...hmmmmmm.....she was a well known name in the financial aid department. Common Algoma, look at your books. $400,000 is quite an amount to go missing over 7 years....
sportsfan17 12/15/2012 6:14:02 AM Report

Typical armchair critics, making ignorant comments and jumping to various conclusions on things. Let's wait and see the whole story for people start saying "maybe" there are others involved.

And they clearly they did look at the books and that's why she got caught. Note "new leadership in the financial department initiated the investigation".

Fact is, it's a great institution that is working to bring lots of students and therefore lots of money into the community. For those of you complaining that the city doesn't bring any jobs to town, this is a prime example. This school will do wonders for the city in the years to come.
Grump 12/15/2012 8:12:22 AM Report

This happened under Celia Ross' watch. Now seems like a good thing she didn't get elected Provincialy. Maybe she can take another run at it with Harper next. lol
Wobbler 12/15/2012 9:43:59 AM Report

An institution like Algoma University handles hundreds of thousand of dollars per year. I am sure they must have some kind of “employee dishonesty policy” that will pay them back a large percentage of the stolen funds.
icecoldstare 12/15/2012 1:25:23 PM Report

Fraud is extremely difficult to detect. It is done in a deceptive manner with the intention of making it look legitimate.

The financial statements of Algoma U are audited each year and even then professional accountants are not able to detect this fraud through normal auditing proceducres.

Unless there is a specific reason to look at each transaction, fraud can go unnoticed for a long time.

Look at multi-nationals that can have millions of dollars taken before they notice.

Even with the tightest controls people will still try to circumvent them. There has to be some trust among employees. It isn't Algoma's fault, it is the employees.
keeper 12/15/2012 2:46:49 PM Report

Its to bad that the punishment in Canada for white collar crime lags behind other countries. We need some serious time handed out to send a message
littlejoe 12/15/2012 5:55:45 PM Report

Thats real smart hire an extra employee to make sure nobody else steals money.
Should have just kept the same person.
Let her work for half the pay for the next ten years.

(1) She won't steal no more.

(2) University will get their money back.

(3) Don't need an extra employee.

Norm 12/16/2012 3:05:10 PM Report

If it's a gambling addiction, and I think it is, then no amount of jail will help anyone. Counselling, of the most intense kind, would be more like it. Addictions are a form of mental illness, therefore, should be treated as such.
thesharr 4/29/2014 12:36:39 PM Report

This is a very good forum for information an response.It's not the responses that makes the Soo look bad but the shit people get away with in this city because of who you are,that's rite because of who you are.Remember THOU SHALL NOT STEAL !Sound familiar, never mind what the lawyers and judges say,Judgement day will come, and no matter who you are or how much stolen money you have it's going to very hot, very fast!
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
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