Otto Rabe is one of our recently recognized innovators. He is the Professor of Accounting/Business at Centralia College, where he teaches, manages the Forensic Accounting Club (FAC) and the VITA Tax center.
The VITA, or Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, program is offered as a service to the community from accounting students at Centralia College. This allows them to gain critical experience working in real world situations through volunteering their time.
The FAC has guest speakers and partake in “The Great Forensic Challenge” each year. In this popular event for accounting students, they learn what it’s like to look for fraud and collusion between two mock companies. This activity also coordinates with Centralia College drama students, who play CEOs of companies and other roles who may need to be interrogated.
Otto’s fun-loving attitude is coupled with his serious attention to student outcomes. In his own words:
I take a holistic commercial approach to delivering instruction as it applies to the field of public accounting. I infuse real-world activity into academia in order to create a more work-focused student outcome. Some examples are: Students auditing actual companies in the “Live Audit” project, outside professionals speak to the FAC club in a guest speaker capacity, and students doing taxes for the general public.
Otto’s innovations are far-reaching and felt across the campus, especially by his students.
It has a very positive affect! It forces me to align instructional outcome with current industry expectation. Students seem to have a better developed sense of their career choices, and I am able to become better connected with the students and their academic development.
Otto’s innovations are affecting the students, the campus and the community. Thanks for all your amazing work, Otto! Keep it up, dude!