About TRIO

TRIO Student Support Services is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education and has been a part of UM's services to students since 1979. We provide assistance to at least 375 active students every year. Students who participate in the program come from every academic department and major on campus. To participate in the program, students must meet eligibility guidelines that are based on household income, parent's education, or student disability.

To become a TRIO student and to help you build a strong foundation for academic success, we encourage you to enroll in our study skills class, "Learning Strategies for Higher Education," found in Cyber Bear or the Schedule of Classes under "C&I 160" and taught by program staff. Other services provided to students include academic advising, tutoring, career information, help with financial aid concerns, workshops, and help understanding academic policies and procedures. We work closely with many other programs at UM including the Financial Aid Office, Enrollment Services, American Indian Student Services, and many others. TRIO SSS employs six staff and 15-20 student employees. The six current project staff members are:

  • Darlene Samson, Director
  • Erin Shaw, Program Coordinator
  • Heather Hibbard, Instructor/Advisor
  • Janet Zupan, Advising Coordinator/Instructor
  • Peter Donaldson, Advisor/Tutor Coordinator

TRIO SSS is administratively located within the Office of Student Success.

There are fourteen TRIO SSS programs at higher education institutions in Montana, and 959 TRIO SSS programs in the U.S. We are part of a national effort by the U.S. Department of Education to make the opportunity for success in college available to low-income and first generation students, and/or students with disabilities.

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