Internal Audit

The Office of Internal Audit

As stated in the Internal Audit Charter, Internal Audit is an independent objective assurance and consulting activity designed to add value and improve Walters State Community College management systems. Internal Audit helps Walters State Community College accomplish its objectives by bringing a systematic, disciplined approach to evaluate and improve the effectiveness of risk management, control, and governance processes. Internal Audit assists Walters State Community College's management in the effective discharge of their duties and responsibilities by evaluating activities, recommending improvements and providing other information designed to promote effective controls.

Walters State Community College's management is responsible for evaluating the institution's risks and establishing and maintaining adequate controls and processes.

Assurance Services

Assurance services involve the internal auditor’s objective assessment of evidence to provide an independent opinion or conclusions regarding an entity, operation, function, process, system, or other subject matter. The nature and scope of the assurance engagement are determined by the internal auditor. There are generally three parties involved in assurance services: (1) the person or group directly involved with the entity, operation, function, process, system, or other subject matter — the process owner, (2) the person or group making the assessment — the internal auditor, and (3) the person or group using the assessment — the user.


Consulting Services

Consulting services are advisory in nature, and are generally performed at the specific request of an engagement client. The nature and scope of the consulting engagement are subject to agreement with the engagement client. Consulting services generally involve two parties: (1) the person or group offering the advice — the internal auditor, and (2) the person or group seeking and receiving the advice — the engagement client. When performing consulting services the internal auditor should maintain objectivity and not assume management responsibility.


Preventing and Reporting Fraud, Waste or Abuse of College Resources

College employees are encouraged to view the Office of Internal Audit as a resource for objective and independent information with regard to any and all College processes, compliance questions, and other administrative concerns, including potential fraud, waste, or abuse of College resources


Importance of the Tone at and from the Top, Values Consistent with the Campus Compact, and Use of Ethics Filters

Management of Walters State Community College is responsible for establishing and implementing systems and procedures to prevent and detect fraud, waste and abuse. The basic elements of a proper control system include:

  • Creating a culture of honesty and high ethics
  • Evaluating risks and implementing processes, procedures and controls to prevent, deter and detect fraud, waste and abuse
  • Developing an appropriate oversight process

Everyone is encouraged to identify problems or potential problems and apply values consistent with Walter State's Campus Compact. Ethical and legal considerations are inherent in defining problems, evaluating identified solutions and evaluating results achieved. Questions that may help in your decision making are summarized by the Ethics Filters mnemonic PLUS as follows:

  • P = Policies: Is it consistent with the College's policies, procedures and guidelines?
  • L= Legal: Is it acceptable under the applicable laws and regulations?
  • U = Universal: Does it conform to the universal principles/values the College has adopted?
  • S= Self: Does it satisfy my personal definition of right, good and fair?

Since the preceding criteria will be used as the basis for justifying decisions and actions, individuals should not negligently or intentionally ignore these ethics filters.

Management at all levels of the College should also review the following information that is available from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and co-sponsored by the Institute of Internal Auditors:


Reporting Methods and Confidentiality

If you have information about activities at the College you believe constitute fraud, waste, or abuse, you may submit a report directly to the Walters State Community College Office of Internal Audit. Other options for reporting fraud at the College include:

  • Telling your supervisor or department head
  • Notifying a senior administrator at your campus or the president
  • Contacting the Office of Internal Audit at mark.ortliebFREEWS or 423.585.6794
  • Calling the TBR Office of System-wide Internal Audit at 615.366.4441
  • Submitting the information on the TBR Office of System-wide Internal Audit website or by using the TBR Contact Us option
  • Emailing the TBR Office of System-wide Internal Audit at
  • Calling the Tennessee Comptroller's Hotline for Fraud, Waste or Abuse at 1.800.232.5454
  • Completing and submitting a Report Fraud, Waste or Abuse Form
    (Reports can be submitted online or by US Mail, by Inter-Office Mail or by email. Reports can be made anonymously and are not tracked in any manner.)

If you are a supervisor, department head, or campus official and you receive a report of a dishonest act, please contact the Internal Auditor at mark.ortliebFREEWS or 423.585.6794 for further assistance.

Before making allegations of fraud, waste or abuse, be reasonably certain of any claims. Such allegations could seriously and negatively impact the accused individual's life and adversely affect the working environment of the department.

As the internal Auditor investigates allegations of fraud, waste or abuse, the reporting individual's confidentiality is protected under Tennessee Code Annotated Title 10, Chapter 7 unless subject to court action requiring disclosure. If TBR has a separate legal obligation to investigate the complaint (e.g., complaints of illegal harassment or discrimination), TBR and its institutions cannot guarantee anonymity or complete confidentiality. State law prohibits discrimination or retaliation of any kind against employees who report, in good faith, allegations of fraud, waste or abuse.



When Internal Audit receives an allegations of dishonesty or any other irregularity by an employee, outside contractor or vendor, the Internal Auditor is required to conduct an investigation.

Supervisors should not attempt to conduct investigations or alert suspected employees of an impending investigation. In an investigation, objectives include verifying the facts, maintaining objectivity and confidentiality, determining responsibility and recommending corrective actions to help ensure that similar actions do not occur in the future.


What is the Risk of Fraud, Waste or Abuse of Resources in your Department?

The Internal Auditor can help develop a risk assessment for any department or activity. Please contact the Office of Internal Audit at mark.ortliebFREEWS or 423.585.6794 if you need assistance in reviewing risks, processes, procedures or controls, or in providing internal control training.


What is an Audit?

An audit is an evaluation of a person, organization, system, process, enterprise, project or product. As a general rule, an audit should always be an independent evaluation that includes some degree of quantitative and qualitative analysis. In other words, an audit is simply an appraisal of organizational processes in light of the goals and objectives of that organization and/or the goals and objectives of an external group (such as a regulatory agency).

Types of Internal Audits

Internal audits at Walters State Community College typically represent one of the following types of engagements:

  • Risk-based: An audit scheduled by the Internal Auditor based on an assessment of relative risk for all the functional areas of the College.
  • Required: An audit required to be performed periodically, usually annually, in order to assure compliance with a specified set of rules or regulations.
  • Follow-up: An audit focused on the status of issues originating from the prior internal audit of the same activity.

Internal audits are usually pre-scheduled by the Internal Auditor but may also be performed upon request. The results of internal audits are reported to the TBR and the president, as well as responsible managers, directors, and other appropriate College officials and employees.


Non-Audit Projects Performed by the Internal Auditor

Non-audit projects usually focus on narrowly-defined problems or activities and are often performed at the request of the responsible manager or director. Goals of non-audit projects typically include the following:

  • Verify and/or define the scope of the problem(s)
  • Identify causes and effects
  • Recommend workable solutions

The results of non-audit projects are usually reported only to the responsible managers or College officials.

Please contact the Internal Auditor at mark.ortliebFREEWS or 423.585.6794 to discuss a possible project or to learn more about this function of the Office of Internal Audit.


External Audits and Required Notification to the Office of Internal Audit

An external auditor is an independent firm engaged by the client subject to the audit, to express an opinion on whether the company or organization's  financial statements are free of material misstatements, whether due to fraud or error.

The College is subject to external audits, program reviews, and similar activities by various agencies and other organizations.

If no federal audit reports are received by the College during the fiscal year, the Division of State Audit, Department of Audit, Comptroller of the Treasury, State of Tennessee requires the Office of Internal Audit to submit written certification of that fact to the Director of State-wide Internal Audit.

If any federal audit reports are received by the College during the fiscal year, the Division of State Audit, Department of Audit, Comptroller of the Treasury, State of Tennessee requires the Office of Internal Audit to forward to the Director of State-wide Internal Audit all such federal audit reports received by the College, regardless of the period covered. To enable the Internal Auditor to do so, the College has determined that the primary contact person for the program or activity being audited/ reviewed/ surveyed is responsible for notifying the Office of Internal Audit of any such engagements performed or being performed.


This notification serves a dual purpose:

  1. to prevent the duplication of audit effort, and
  2. to provide information required by the Tennessee Board of Regents.


WSCC External Audit Notification Form


For more information contact:

Internal Auditor
Office 308 CCEN
College Center Building
Walters State Community College
500 S Davy Crockett Pkwy
Morristown, TN 37813-6899
f: 423.714.2197



Walters State Community College's Office of Internal Audit strives to be a valued and respected consultant and advisor to the management of Walters State Community College and to the Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR).



The internal audit function contributes to the improvement of the institution's operations by providing objective and relevant assurance regarding risk management, control and governance processes to management and the TBR. To provide relevant information, the internal audit activity considers the goals of the institution, management's risk assessments and other input from management in determining its risk-based audit activities.


Internal Audit Charter

Walters State Community College’s Internal Audit Charter is a formal written document that defines the purpose, authority and scope, and the responsibility and role of the Office of Internal Audit. The Charter establishes the organizational status and reporting structure for the Office of Internal Audit and prescribes adherence to the Institute of Internal Auditors' (IIA) International Professional Practices Framework (IPPF).  The current Charter was signed and dated by WSCC President Dr. Tony Miksa and WSCC Internal Auditor Mark A. Ortlieb, CPA, on April 16, 2018 and April 10, 2018, respectively.

The Charter is periodically assessed by the Internal Auditor as chief audit executive to determine whether the purpose, authority, and responsibilities defined in the Charter are adequate to enable the internal auditing activity to accomplish its objectives.  The results of the periodic assessment are communicated to senior management and the Audit Committee of the TBR.


Authority and Scope

Internal Audit's review of operations may include the examination and evaluation of the effectiveness of all aspects of institutional operations at Walters State Community College. In the course of its work, Internal Audit has full and complete direct access to all Walters State Community College books, electronic and manual records, physical properties, and personnel information relative to the performance of duties and responsibilities. All documents and information given to Internal Audit during its work will be handled in the same prudent manner that Walters State Community College expects of the employees normally accountable for them.

Internal Audit has neither direct responsibility for, nor authority over, any of the activities, functions, or tasks it reviews nor shall its review relieve others of their responsibilities. The internal auditor must maintain a high degree of independence and not be assigned duties or engage in any operations or decision making in any activities that he or she would normally be expected to review or evaluate as part of the normal audit function.





Internal Auditor
308 CCEN
f: 423.714.2197