Why become a VITA volunteer?
Simple, to make a difference. As a VITA volunteer, you can help people in your community to prepare taxes free of charge, especially low-income families and foreign students. You also receive hands-on experience preparing tax returns, applying what you learn in classes, and gaining customer service skills.
Volunteer at SDSU
To serve as an SDSU VITA Volunteer, you need to register for ACCTG 409, a Credit/No Credit course associated with VITA. Students are eligible for up to 3 units of ACCTG 409 but note that each unit requires an additional 2 hours of volunteer time. We recommend that volunteers should have already completed or be concurrently enrolled in one of the following three accounting courses: ACCTG 325, ACCTG 332, or ACCTG 503. You must be prepared to attend the in-class training sessions that occur prior to the opening of the VITA site and you are required to pass the IRS exams to be a VITA volunteer. SDSU VITA requires that you pass the Volunteer Standards of Conduct, Intake/Interview and Quality Review, Basic, Advanced, and Foreign Student exams prior to preparing any tax returns. Failure to complete these exams by the due date will result in a grade of No Credit.
Each unit of ACCTG 409 requires that you work at the SDSU VITA site for at least a 2 hour block on Saturday’s during tax filing season. The times are commensurate with the class times for each section (12 noon-1:30pm; 1:45pm-3:15pm; and 3:30pm-5:00pm).
Volunteer at the International Rescue Committee (IRC)
If you wish to volunteer at the IRC and receive course credit then you must enroll in ACCTG 409 as well as contact [email protected] or visit the IRC’s website to apply. If you wish to volunteer at the IRC and do NOT want to receive course credit, simply contact the IRC at [email protected] or visit their website. Because IRC requires at least 6 hours per week of volunteer time, you generally should sign up for three units of ACCTG 409 (since you will be working 3 units worth of time). For course credit you MUST attend the SDSU training sessions as well as the IRC’s training sessions but the IRC does NOT require that you pass the foreign student IRS exam. The IRC operates VITA sites in City Heights and El Cajon during the following hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday 10 AM-4 PM and Tuesday, Thursday 1 PM-7 PM.
Volunteer at Dreams for Change
If you wish to volunteer at the Dreams for Change and do NOT want to receive course credit, simple contact Dreams for Change at [email protected] or 619-535-7546. If you wish to volunteer at the Dreams for Change and receive course credit then you must also enroll in ACCTG 409. Dreams for Change has flexible volunteer requirements for time and so you could conceivably enroll in 1, 2 or 3 units of ACCTG 409. For course credit you MUST attend the SDSU training sessions, but Dream for Change does NOT require that you pass the foreign student IRS exam. Dreams for Change operates VITA sites at Parkway Plaza in El Cajon, Westfield Mission Valley, Westfield Plaza Bonita in National City, Westfield North County in Escondido, and the United Way of San Diego on Murphy Canyon Road. These locations operate from 10:00am - 9:00pm everyday except Sunday (11:00am - 7:00pm). Dreams for Change requires a minimum of four hours per month but you will be required to attend for 2 hours per week for each unit of ACCTG 409 you enroll in, if you want course credit.