Business students helping area residents with tax preparation

March 14, 2013 | News, UToday
By Bob Mackowiak

UT College of Business and Innovation students who are members of the student organization Enactus are working with this area’s Free Tax Preparation Program to help local residents prepare 2012 returns.

The program was launched through the partnership of Lucas County Treasurer Wade Kapszukiewicz, Lucas County Commissioner Tina Skeldon Wozniak and the United Way of Greater Toledo.

“The UT College of Business and Innovation is pleased to be involved with this meaningful community activity,” said Dr. Sonny Ariss, professor and chair of the Department of Management. “Furthermore, we are proud of the individual commitments of dozens of our Enactus members, students who are extending their classroom knowledge to directly improve the lives of local residents. This activity clearly advances our role as a relevant University.”

Thanks to the UT College of Business and Innovation Enactus Chapter, one of the locations for tax assistance is in the Savage & Associates Complex for Business Learning and Engagement, located in Stranahan Hall North Room 2100, from 9 a.m. to noon on Fridays through April 19. (This location will be closed March 29.)

“This location will better serve those on the UT campus as well as the surrounding community, as there was not previously a location in this area,” noted Associate Lecturer Laura Williams of the UT Department of Management.

Williams explained that there are nine business students who are the site coordinators for the UT location. These students have been IRS trained and certified to provide the tax preparation assistance. Nearly 40 Enactus students are involved with some aspect of this program.

Enactus (formerly known as Students in Free Enterprise) is a community of student, academic and business leaders committed to using the power of entrepreneurial action to transform lives and shape a better, more sustainable world.

More than 2,600 individuals and families in Lucas County received free tax preparation in 2012, resulting in more than $3 million coming back to the community in federal tax returns.

This year individuals and families in Lucas, Wood and Ottawa counties who make $51,000 or less may be eligible for the assistance.

“This is a powerful example of a strong partnership between volunteers, business and government to support hardworking families,” said Karen Mathison, president and CEO of United Way of Greater Toledo.

Anyone wishing to use the free tax preparation service — either at UT or at one of nearly 50 locations throughout the area — must make an appointment by calling 2-1-1, the United Way of Greater Toledo’s Community Resource Directory, or by calling 1.800.650.HELP (4357).

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