Student Leads Free Tax Assistance Program

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance ProgramDid you know you can get your taxes done for free at Prairie View A&M University?

“For the past 15 years, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA), an Internal Revenue Service (IRS)-sponsored program, has partnered with PVAMU’s College of Business (COB) and Cooperative Extension Program to provide tax assistance to people who cannot prepare their tax returns,” said Adrienne Seibert, a senior Accounting major at PVAMU, who also serves as program director of PVAMU’s Small Business Development Center. “Anyone can come and get their taxes done, free of charge.”

According to the IRS website, the VITA program is available to anyone who makes $54,000 or less, persons with disabilities, and limited English-speaking taxpayers who need assistance in preparing their tax returns. “Our tax preparers are certified by the IRS and trained to help prepare basic tax returns,” said Seibert. “This year’s group of volunteers, under the supervision of myself, Bridget Ross, director of PVAMU’s SBDC, and COB professor William Vetter, consists mostly of PVAMU students, with the exception of one.”

If you’re planning to go and get help with your taxes, be sure to bring a photo ID, your social security card, and any and all tax documentation. “This is a great program. I hear stories of people who go to other places that offer tax preparation services, and they take a majority of their refund just to file their taxes,” said Seibert. “The actual process of filing taxes is not difficult, and it is an easy task to complete. I am grateful to be able to help and teach the public about their filing taxes properly, and I value this opportunity as a way to serve my community and gain additional knowledge and skills in the process.”

PVAMU’s Small Business Development Center is located in the Panther Plaza on Owens Road. Walk-ins are welcome Tuesdays and Thursdays, through April 26, from 4-6:30 p.m. For more information, or to schedule a Saturday appointment, call 936-261-9257, or email Adrienne Seibert at sbdc@pvamu.edu.

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-This story by Marchita Shilo originally appeared in Academic Insights.