Congressman Becerra commends Cal State L.A. students for volunteer tax preparation program

February 26, 2015
Congressman Becerra and students

Congressman Xavier Becerra paid a recent visit to the Cal State L.A. campus, where he commended nearly 100 student volunteers for helping community members prepare their income tax returns.

The accounting students from the College of Business and Economics were participating in the VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program.  Under the program, the students offer free income-tax preparation services every Saturday through April 11 to people who make $53,000 or less and need assistance preparing and filing tax returns.

Becerra lauded the students for their volunteer work and noted that the VITA program is a great service for people who lack the means to hire accountants to prepare their tax returns.

Also taking part in the February 21 event were members of the California Board of Equalization.

The students were joined by CBE Dean James A. Goodrich, Professor Kathy Hansen, who chairs the Department of Accounting, and Professor Gretchen Lawrie.

“This is an excellent hands-on learning experience for our accounting students,” Goodrich said. “It also highlights our commitment to the University’s mission of engagement, service, and the public good.”

The students are enrolled in Accounting 521D and 421D, both of which are taught by Lawrie.Cal State L.A. students

The VITA services are available on a first-come, first-serve basis from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturdays at Salazar Hall. Appointments are not necessary.

Since 1998, the Internal Revenue Service and Cal State L.A. faculty have trained accounting students to make a difference in their communities.

For more details on VITA services and for the checklist on what to bring, call (323) 343-2867 or go to

Photos: At the top, Congressman Xavier Becerra gathers with Cal State L.A. students, faculty, administrators and others at a recent VITA event. To the right, students meet with a staff member of the Board of Equalization. (Credit: Edward Kitaoka/Cal State L.A.)



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