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Beyond the Classroom: Accounting Students Volunteer to Prep Taxes for Tucsonans in Need

Accounting studentsMany accounting students participate in
the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, administered in Tucson through the United Way of Southern Arizona. 

Photo courtesy Accounting Student Association..

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April 2013

By Liz Warren-Pederson

Accounting undergrads have spent over 140 hours processing tax refunds for Tucsonans in need through a partnership with United Way and the IRS’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program.

The VITA program offers free tax help to people who make $51,000 or less and need assistance in preparing their own tax returns.

The Accounting Student Association has participated in the VITA program for many years, but this year, the number of volunteers exploded, thanks to the efforts of senior Alexandria Napier (Eller Accounting ’13), current president of the club. “The IRS requires 30 hours of training for its certification program,” she said. “But the off-campus training was a real barrier for students who would otherwise want to help.” Napier became a certified IRS trainer and, along with ASA vice president Brittany Langer (Eller Accounting ’13), facilitated training sessions for her peers on campus.

“We were aiming for ten students, but ended up with 35,” she said. “Now they’re out there prepping taxes at sites all over Tucson.”

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