In anticipation of the coming tax season, Paradise Valley Community College (PVCC) is partnering with Jackson Hewitt and Fresh Start Women’s Foundation to expand the pool of highly qualified tax preparers. 

This strategic alliance between education, business and non-profit partners gives students the opportunity to acquire in-demand job skills and offers guaranteed interviews at Jackson Hewitt for Fresh Start women and PVCC students who successfully complete the Enrolled Agent program.

“I am pleased to announce our alliance with Jackson Hewitt and Fresh Start Women’s Foundation,” said Dr. Tiffany E. Hunter, PVCC president. “This program will position our highly qualified students for careers in tax, serve industry’s need for trained talent and strengthen the local economy. As the second largest accounting firm in the country, Jackson Hewitt is providing an opportunity for our students and Fresh Start women to acquire job skills and immediately interview with an industry leader and to put those skills to work.”

The Certificate of Completion (CCL) in the Enrolled Agent program at PVCC prepares students for the Enrolled Agent Examination. Enrolled Agents' expertise in the continually changing field of taxation enables them to effectively represent taxpayers at all administrative levels within the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Students who successfully complete this CCL may also seek employment as tax professionals.

As global markets continue to grow and develop, industry’s finance and accounting needs evolve as well. Accounting is mission-critical to business success and up-to-date job skills will continue to be in-demand by employers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the tax preparation career field is expected to grow by 2.9% through 2026.

“Now is a great time to pursue a career as a tax professional, so we could not be more thrilled to partner with PVCC and Fresh Start,” said Lee Cunningham, a local Phoenix Jackson Hewitt general manager.

“Our industry continues to grow and develop, which means we can offer exciting career opportunities to PVCC students and Fresh Start women. This is especially true during the coming tax season. Tax preparation work is seasonal from Dec. to the end of April and features flexible full or part time employment opportunities. We’ve seen many parents pursue this employment opportunity as it offers flexible hours, great pay and professional growth opportunities.”

The Enrolled Agent (EA) program is eligible for the Department of Labor’s Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) funding, offering support for the unemployed or underemployed. This means students may qualify through WIOA to fully fund their program tuition.

“With the current shortage of well-trained talent in the accounting industry and no foreseen slowdown in the demand for tax professionals, the Enrolled Agent Program is a great opportunity for ambitious students to jump into the industry and make an immediate impact,” said Lynn Clark, PVCC accounting program director and certified public accountant (CPA).

“An Enrolled Agent is a federally licensed tax professional and it is the highest credential awarded by the IRS. In just 12 to 18 months, you can complete the Enrolled Agent Certificate of Completion (CCL) and immediately begin a career in tax. PVCC’s program also prepares students to take the EA examination.”

To learn more about PVCC’s alliance with Jackson Hewitt, visit maricopa.edu/jackson-hewitt and complete the inquiry form listed at the bottom. To learn more about PVCC’s alliance with Fresh Start Women’s Foundation, visit maricopa.edu/FS.

“We are immensely grateful for the partnership with PVCC and Jackson Hewitt. This alliance, with both a strong education partner and employer, gives the women Fresh Start serves a direct route to acquiring in-demand job skills and pursuing a new career path,” said Fresh Start CEO Kim McWaters.

“We know that you can lift a woman up by giving her access to education and job skills that will allow her to earn self-sufficient wages and support her family. That shift positively impacts her life, her children, and generations to come.”

Organizations interested in partnering with PVCC to create similar programs are encouraged to contact Dr. Brianna DeGeus, PVCC executive director for strategic partnerships at brianna.degeus@paradisevalley.edu


Paradise Valley Community College (PVCC) is one of the 10 colleges in the Maricopa County Community College District, one of the largest community college districts in the nation. Established in 1987, PVCC offers academic courses leading to associate degrees, university transfer, certificates and short-term job training. PVCC offers a learning environment that promotes inclusion, positive social change and community engagement for residents of northeast Phoenix and northern Maricopa County, including Cave Creek, Carefree and North Scottsdale. In 2009, PVCC opened its second campus, Black Mountain, which serves residents in the northern outskirts of the Valley. 

The Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD) is an EEO/AA institution and an equal opportunity employer of protected veterans and individuals with disabilities. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or national origin. A lack of English language skills will not be a barrier to admission and participation in the career and technical education programs of the district.  For additional information, as well as a listing of all coordinators within the Maricopa College system, visit maricopa.edu/non-discrimination.

Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. is the second largest tax-preparation service in the United States, responsible for preparing over 2 million federal, state and local income-tax returns each year. 

Fresh Start is celebrating 30 years of supporting women in Arizona. Its mission is to provide access and resources that help women achieve self-sufficiency and use their strength to thrive. Its ultimate vision is to create unlimited opportunities for women.

Fresh Start serves over 3,000 women annually who are 18 years and older. 86% are mothers, 60% are single mothers and 64% are women of color. These women face a variety of barriers hindering their ability to be personally or financially self-sufficient, including domestic violence, generational poverty and unemployment. Fresh Start offers focused programs, services, access to training and education, as well as employment and career services to help women reach their personal and professional goals through its Impact Program.


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