Accounting Students Provide Free Income Tax Assistance

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Fairmont State University Accounting students are providing free income tax preparation assistance in three counties and receiving real-life experience to benefit them in their future careers.

Beginning Feb. 1, Accounting students are once again offering IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) tax preparation services in Fairmont, Mannington, Clarksburg and Parsons. The VITA program, which is supervised by Dr. T. Jean Engebretson, provides free basic tax return preparation for eligible taxpayers. VITA provides students with hands-on learning about income tax preparation and real experience working with tax clients.

“The VITA program is an effective community outreach service of the School of Business. Last year, students in the Fairmont State VITA program prepared more than 1,200 federal and state tax returns. The students work long hours and travel to many locations to provide this free service. Their level of expertise and professionalism is routinely praised by the participants. The goodwill generated for the School of Business is immeasurable,” said Dr. Richard Harvey, Dean of the School of Business.

Student volunteers have a responsibility to provide high quality service and uphold the highest of ethical standards. The student volunteers receive training and certification from the IRS to help prepare basic tax returns in North Central West Virginia communities. Many taxpayers return each year and refer their friends and neighbors to the FSU VITA program.

The Fairmont State VITA sites are generally located at community and neighborhood centers, libraries and other convenient and public locations. The service includes free electronic filing. To view the complete 2013 VITA schedule of dates and locations, visit For more information, call (304) 367-4261.

No appointment is necessary, but those who wish to participate should arrive at least one hour prior to closing time. Returns are prepared on a first-come, first-served basis.