Accounting students learn about tax law on Chicago day trip

November 17, 2023

A day trip to Chicago allowed three Trine University accounting students to get a closer look at tax law processes, legislation and institutions.

Joey Baughman of Lake Orion, Michigan, Samuel Sering of Indianapolis and Josh Myers of Hicksville, Ohio, accompanied Al Beatty, assistant professor in Trine’s Ketner School of Business, to locations including the IRS Taxpayers Assistance Office, IRS Tax Court, the office of Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and the Federal Reserve on Oct. 30.

“It was a fun, informative and quick trip,” said Beatty. “We left at 6:10 a.m. and returned just before 7 p.m.”

Baughman participated because he plans to attend law school and the trip was centered around the Tax Court. He particularly enjoyed meeting Andrew VanSingel, territory manager for the Internal Revenue Service IRS Wage & Investment: Stakeholder Partnerships, Education, and Communication (SPEC).

VanSingel was the primary organizer of the trip.

“He was very willing to answer some of my questions and was a great help,” Baughman said.

The group also met with representatives from the IRS Taxpayers Assistance Office, spoke with the Hon. Albert Lauber, senior judge of the United States Tax Court, via Zoom, and watched a hearing of the Tax Court.

“Originally, the judge and the petitioner were to be in Chicago for the hearing, but all of the cases were resolved out of court except for this one, which is why it was Zoomed,” Beatty said.

They spoke with an attorney from Ladder Up, a nonprofit organization that provides free financial consulting resources to help low-income clients secure opportunities to move up the economic ladder.

Later, they toured Sen. Duckworth’s office, visited the Money Room (museum) at the Federal Reserve and walked by the Chicago Board of Trade.

“I learned a lot about how the offices of congressmen and women operate,” said Baughman. “I thought it particularly interesting to see how the office operates even while, in this case, the senator was not currently in office.”

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