TRIO Student Support Services (TRIO SSS) is a grant program funded by the U.S. Department of Education to provide support, guidance, and access to opportunities to historically underrepresented college students. The program was created as one of eight federal programs as part of Title IV of the Higher Education Act and is one of only 25 TRIO SSS programs in Pennsylvania. Westminster College’s TRIO SSS program was established in 2020 and serves approximately 140 students each year.
While there are many support services and offices across campus, TRIO SSS is often the first stop for our participants. Whether we can provide assistance or guidance in our offices, or if we need to help you seek services from another office, we pride ourselves on being the first place a TRIO student comes when they need help.
When working with TRIO SSS, students are assigned an academic advisor that takes the time to get to know each of their students and deliver a personalized action plan for a successful term. Advisors will work with participants to develop a semesterly plan to address a student’s academic, personal, career, or financial literacy goals. Students meet with their advisor regularly throughout the term to ensure they are meeting their goals and are encouraged to take advantage of the other opportunities that TRIO SSS provides.
In addition to academic, career, and financial education, TRIO SSS will regularly sponsor cultural trips, graduate and professional school visits, and visits to employers of interest to our participants.
Participation in the TRIO SSS program is limited to 140 students per year. Students must be accepted into the program based on eligibility criteria outlined by the U.S. Department of Education.
As a participant in the TRIO SSS program, a student can receive:
To join the TRIO SSS program, a student must be:
Students must also meet any one or more of the following criteria:
The TRIO SSS Program encourages potentially eligible newly admitted and current students to apply. Applications will be processed throughout the year, and eligible students who apply after our program reaches capacity (140 students) will be placed on a waitlist until a vacancy is available.
To apply for the TRIO SSS Program, please complete the online application form here. Please note that the application may require you to gather additional information and documents before completion. Paper copies of the application are available in the TRIO SSS offices on the 4th floor of Thompson-Clark Hall.
After submitting your application, the TRIO SSS team will determine your eligibility. If you are selected to participate, we will contact you to schedule a program orientation and meeting with your TRIO SSS advisor.
The TRIO Student Support Services project at Westminster College is 100% federally funded at $261,888.00 annually.