TRIO Program Services

The nine major components of the TRIO SSS Program are:

Orientation Seminar, "How To College"

The Orientation Seminar is required of all program participants. The Seminar is a seven (7) week noncredit seminar that will include orientation activities designed to assist transitioning into college, the collegial process, assure entry into designated classes, and procedures to enhance and obtain support services to achieve academic success.

Tutorial Program

Tutoring will be determined upon need and as requested by the student. Tutoring will be available in the general education academic courses of reading, writing, math, and other courses identified during the assessment of individual student needs process. Individual tutoring will be available to those students who are in crisis or require individual attention as determined by student progress and SSS staff.

Mentoring Program

Small group and individualized mentoring will be available for all SSS participants under the direction of the SSS Counselor. The counselor will ensure that the mentoring component will provide a high quality of training and appropriate services to students by administering formal and informal assessments, reference checks, interest surveys, and observations. The mentoring program will assist program participants in becoming familiar with college life, will provide guidance in the selection of classes, will provide avenues for program participants to have someone to discuss issues unique to low income first generation college students, and provide a support network to students unfamiliar with college.

Learning Communities & Supplemental Instruction

Selected SSS participants will be eligible for enrollment in a pipeline curriculum of three academic courses in dedicated sections. These students will progress as a group with a minimum of two academic classes each semester. They will meet for study groups outside of class and will be assigned to the same mentor. They will participate in cultural activities as a group. An Academic Specialist will be assigned to each class and will attend each class section. Once a week outside of class, the Academic Specialists will meet with the class to provide supplementary instruction to include tutoring, reviewing notes, clarifying concepts, test preparation, and for group discussion.

Cultural Activities

TRIO Student Support Services participants will be given the opportunity to experience cultural events that will complement their educational experience, as well as enlighten and entertain. SSS students will have a better understanding of global society, through exposure to different races, ethnicities, cultures, and will practice tolerance towards people of different backgrounds. Program participants will be invited to participate in all campus activities and events such as Leadership Conferences, clubs, student organizations, etc. Student will also have the opportunity to visit local museums, galleries, and historical sites.

Transfer to a Four-Year College

Services to assist TRIO Student Support Services students in transferring to a four-year institution will consists of exposure to the University Center located at VSCC, a Faculty Exchange Program, and the opportunity for SSS students to speak with University faculty advisors. The University Center, located on the VSCC main campus, currently has five (5) four-year institutions providing baccalaureate degree programs to students.

Financial Aid Counseling

All TRIO Student Support Services students will be invited to attend one of the workshops offered by the Financial Aid Office. SSS students will be assisted in completing financial aid applications by SSS staff in conjunction with the Office of Financial Aid. The Office of Financial Aid has committed to working wit the SSS students to assure that each student receives the best financial aid package possible.

Academic Advising

All SSS participants will receive individual assistance with course selection to insure that there is progress with their academic goals. The TRIO Student Support Services Counselor will meet with each student to review their Individualized Learning Plan and any necessary revisions will be made at that time. The Advising Center will assist the SSS Counselor in advising SSS students.

Computer Laptop Checkout

TRIO Student Support Services participants will have available to them thirty (30) laptop computers for use at home. The availability of a computer at home will assist the student in having chat room discussions with their peers and faculty, will increase their opportunities to conduct research through the internet, will allow them to contact faculty through email, and will increase their understanding and knowledge of computer technology.