121 Students Recognized by Neighborhood Tax Centers for Helping to File 4,705 Low-Income Tax Returns
From outstanding academic achievements to national case competitions, accounting students at the C. T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston succeed inside and outside the classroom. In addition to using their knowledge for academic and professional success, one group of students also uses their skills to give back to the Houston community.
This year, 121 Bauer College students volunteered their time with Houston’s Neighborhood Tax Centers to provide free income tax preparation for families earning an average of $20,000 per year. The students volunteered 3,875 hours of their time to prepare 4,705 tax returns. Their efforts resulted in tax refunds totaling $7,899,360.
Lauren Duplessis, volunteer and training manager for Neighborhood Tax Centers, credited the Bauer students’ service to helping Houston’s Neighborhood Tax Centers become the number one center in the state of Texas.
“Without our partnership with Bauer College, the Neighborhood Tax Centers program would not have been able to meet our goal,” Duplessis said. “I am expecting this upcoming tax season to be an even larger success because of the contributions of our Bauer volunteers.”
On Nov. 1, Neighborhood Tax Centers hosted a reception to recognize the outstanding efforts of the Bauer College volunteers. As Dean Latha Ramchand accepted the plaque on behalf of Bauer College from the Neighborhood Tax Centers, she asked students to share their thoughts on their volunteer experience.
Many of the students had previously volunteered with the Neighborhood Tax Centers and chose to return again this year, they said, because they benefitted from helping these families.
“It’s so rewarding to see how grateful the families are when you tell them they’ll get a refund,” MSACCY student Erica Cervantes said. “Knowing that I was able to help them with that is a great feeling.”
Bauer College also benefits from the relationship with Neighborhood Tax Centers.
“Bauer College is proud of our close affiliation with the Neighborhood Tax Center and the work they do,” said Director of Accounting Programs, Michael Newman, Ph.D. “Our students get practical experience and IRS-approved training while helping others in our community. It is a great partnership.”
Neighborhood Tax Centers will be hosting volunteer training sessions on the University of Houston campus in UCBB 330 this month. To find out more information about how to get involved, contact Lauren Duplessis at lduplessis@Neighborhood-Centers.org.
By Sarayu Sundar