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QCC Students Offer Free Tax Assistance to the Worcester Community

April 2023
  • VITA Students
    Accounting students Christian Santos, Nathalia Paes de Souza, Sirinie Manaouil, Gui de Jesus and Assistant Professor of Accounting Eduardo Rivas

Quinsigamond Community College is offering free tax assistance through the IRS’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Certified volunteers and QCC students provide assistance with preparing tax returns for people who make $60,000 or less and people with limited English language skills. The VITA program provides services primarily at the Main South Community Development Corporation but also offers workshops at QCC’s main campus in Worcester and the QCC at Southbridge campus.

QCC Assistant Professor of Accounting Eduardo Rivas started volunteering with the VITA program in 2013 and then began coordinating QCC’s involvement with the VITA program in 2018, offering student volunteers credit for prior learning. In 2019, QCC began offering Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (ACC 225) as a credit course which Rivas teaches.

The course focuses on tax law concepts, common situations involving credits and deductions, and how to use filing software. After training, the students go directly to hands-on tax preparation.

“The first day is like a boot camp, but after that you’re good,” said Guilherme De Jesus, a business administration student in ACC 225, who noted that he will be using these skills in his future career as an accountant.

Sirine Manaouil is also taking ACC 225. She said she loves meeting new people and talking to them during the process. In addition, Manaouil is a business administration major and said she would like to pursue a career in accounting.

Rivas noted that one of the challenges of doing this work is the language barrier that can often arise; however, the students who assist with the program often speak multiple languages. He is thankful for students like Christian Santos, who is currently in the accounting certificate program and speaks fluent Spanish. Other students in ACC 225 also speak Portuguese, Arabic, French and Vietnamese.

"I love getting to know the community. It's very diverse, especially here in Worcester," said student Nathalia Paes de Souza, adding, "Most people are really nice and understanding."

"We serve every corner of this community, every race, every age," De Jesus added. 

De Jesus, Manaouil, Paes de Souza and Santos all had high praise for Rivas and commented on how the class fosters interaction with classmates that often doesn't occur in other courses.  

Services are offered through April. For more information visit or email Eduardo Rivas at erivas [at]