If you go to UCLA, in about February, you’ll recieve a copy of your 1098-T, a tax form. This is a form that the university is required to file with the IRS to prove that you actually paid for tuition and went to school that tax year — you’ll get a copy too. Save that form and keep it handy when you’re doing your taxes or make sure it gets to your accountant. It’s worth some serious cash!
One major benefit of proving that you’re at a university paying tuition is that it makes you eligible for the Hope Scholarship Credit and Lifetime Learning Credit. These credits will save you a lot of money on your taxes and you might even find that the government owes YOU money. As of this writing, the credit is worth about $2,000 depending on your circumstances — so that tax form is definitely worth keeping around. Here’s more detail from the IRS.
FYI, UCLA doesn’t actually mail out this tax form — it’ll come from an external vendor called TRCS. If you didn’t get the form, you can get it online too.
If you’re a nonresident alien student, don’t worry about any of this stuff. The university doesn’t do this for you.