HomeNewsTRIO educates, prepares students for academic next level

TRIO educates, prepares students for academic next level

By Sorayda Rivera

Student Life Editor

Academic coaching, understanding financial literacy, transfer information and teaching students how to use the resources on campus are on the list of services provided by TRIO. All services provided are free for TRIO students.

TRIO is a program derived to help students plan the education and training they need to move up in life, specifically the admissions and financial aid processes to enable them to enroll in the college, university or vocational school of their choice.

Since 1965, TRIO programs have helped students overcome class, social and cultural barriers to higher education.

Rosa Hopkins, coordinator of student support services, explained the program’s goal is to provide resources that will help students at the two-year level to successfully graduate and then transfer to a four-year level.

“We are trying to get students to have successful semesters and then persist from semester to semester until they graduate from the college,” Hopkins said. She added TRIO helps one have a serious approach to their scholastic studies.

“TRIO will allow you to set that foundation, network, and get you to the next goal of your journey,” Hopkins said.

The TJC TRIO program has two programs to serve the individual educational needs of its students — Educational Opportunities Center and Student Support Services.

Students must be seeking a 4-year major to qualify for TRIO’s Student Support  Services. Additionally, they must either be first-generation college students, low income,  or have a disabling condition as defined by the ADA.

The Educational Opportunity Center helps students to plan their education and training so students can move forward in life. This teaches students to navigate the admissions and financial aid process, so students can enroll in the college, university or vocational school of their choice.

The Student Support Services helps prepare students to do college-level work and provides academic and financial opportunities. They also provide tutoring services and support to ensure students graduate.

Both programs provide students with an opportunity to work one-on-one with a TRIO counselor. 

First-year TJC student and elementary education major, D’Avianna Crockett-Bickham, believes TRIO will help her graduate successfully.

“It’ll help me gain experience and build connections that’ll help me enter into the next step of transferring to a university while also, instilling impactful qualities that I’ll need for my career and overall success,” Crockett-Bickham said. 

Mary Kaye Bartlett, a two-year TRIO student, said her experience with TRIO has helped boost her confidence.  Bartlett said since being in TRIO she has “better time management skills, increased knowledge and mental stability for test-taking.” 

“I have utilized the tutoring services both with the math and the writing services within the TRIO department,” Bartlett said. “I also like that when I have utilized the tutoring services in the library it allows for extra time.”

TRIO also provides academic advising, but it is not required.

Like everything else in life right now, there have been some changes due to COVID-19. 

Hopkins said some of the services they generally offer have been reduced because of COVID-19 and social distancing. 

TRIO has a computer lab with eight computers, but only three students can use the lab at a time. In the past, TRIO has had late office hours, but their new office hours are 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Another change due to COVID-19 is TRIO’s trip to visit and tour other campuses. TJC has suspended all travel, so this semester they will be hosting virtual college tours.

Other events hosted by TRIO include Grit and Mindsets, Lunch and Learn workshops, and Work Ethic workshops. 

Hopkins said they want to empower and educate students so they know what questions to ask and where to go for resources.

“Although I haven’t been in TRIO very long, I really appreciate the staff for being so sweet and welcoming,” Crockett-Bickham said. “This program in general does so much and is already helping me adjust to managing college life,  balance my time and enjoy the college experience.”

TRIO also assists students needing assistance with career planning, assisting in college majors/degree plans, class selection, help finding and applying for scholarships, or FAFSA guidance.

“TRIO is definitely worth looking into; you can’t hurt taking the time to look,” Bartlett said. “It has so many positives to offer. You just have to be willing to open your mind, be willing to step out of where you’ve been and go for it.” 

For information on how to apply and further requirements, visit tjc.edu/trio or on the third floor of the Student Rogers Center.

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