Tax clinic ‘great opportunity to serve the community’

Eric Bourque
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Those getting ready for the Burridge income tax clinic include (from left): student Kristin Murphy, accounting instructor Donna Amirault and students Emily Newell and Meghan Leary.

ERIC BOURQUE PHOTO

 

By Eric Bourque

THE VANGUARD

www.thevanguard.ca

 

Second-year students in the business administration accounting program at the Nova Scotia Community College Burridge Campus again this year will help people with their income taxes as part of a project that was launched nearly two decades ago.

The Burridge tax clinic – now in its 18th year – is scheduled to be held over five days, from Tuesday to Friday, March 18-21, and Monday, March 24. The clinic hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“Eighteen years, it’s hard to believe,” said Donna Amirault, who teaches accounting at Burridge and who has seen the clinic grow. In its first year 87 tax returns were completed. The number has been high as 1,000 and last year was about 860, which is pretty much average for the clinic, Amirault says.

When she first got the idea to do the tax clinic, Amirault had seniors in mind and it’s primarily this segment of the population the clinic continues to serve.

Twelve students will take part in this year’s clinic.

Said Amirault, referring to the students, “They’re excited about it and a bit anxious, a bit nervous, but that’s to be expected. It’s the same every year.”

The clinic is the service learning component of the accounting program and one of the biggest projects they will undertake during their two years in the program, Amirault says.

“It’s a great opportunity to serve the community,” she said.

Anyone interested in attending the clinic is asked to make an appointment. They used to accept walk-ins, but now that the clinic is well established and has a lot of regulars, people are encouraged to call ahead of time.

Amirault says the response to the clinic has been “phenomenal.”

People will meet her in the grocery store, she says, and ask her if the clinic is going to be held again.

“It’s very well known now and the people that come back year after year really appreciate the professionalism of the students, the service they get, and they appreciate getting to meet the students and chatting with them,” she said.

Organizations: Nova Scotia Community College Burridge Campus

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