U.S. Department of Education grant extends Student Support Services program at TROY

A previous class of participants in the Student Support Services program at TROY enjoy an outing to Camp Butter and Egg.

A previous class of participants in the Student Support Services program at TROY enjoy an outing to Camp Butter and Egg.

Troy University has been awarded a more than $3.8 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education for student support services over the next five years.  

The Student Support Services Project at TROY serves more than 450 students on the University’s Troy, Dothan and Montgomery campuses. The program, which will receive $3,898,330 in U.S. Department of Education funding over the next five years, provides qualified participants with academic tutoring, advising and assistance in course selection, career advising, graduate school planning and visitation, financial and economic literacy and assistance with completion of the financial aid process.

Qualifications for participation in the program include, in part, being classified as a first-generation, low-income or special needs student. Some elements of the program have operated for nearly 30 years at the University.

“We were delighted to receive the good news that our Student Support Services grant has been renewed for another five years,” said Dr. Hal Fulmer, Associate Provost and Dean of Undergraduate and First-Year Studies. “This renewal recognizes the hard work and serious commitment to our students made by our SSS staff every day. Our SSS program is building success for some of our most at-risk students. As our students succeed, all of us — the University and the community — succeed as well.”

Dr. Fulmer said the program is making a difference at TROY, noting that the 96% of SSS students were retained from Fall 2018 to Fall 2019 and the 97% that are classified as being in “Good Academic Standing” are above the campus average for all students.

“The Student Support Services program makes such a big difference in the lives of so many students. I feel that many of our participants may not graduate from college if they were not a part of the program,” said Mary Griffin, Director of Troy University’s TRIO unit, which includes the Student Support Services program.

Griffin said the dedication of the program’s staff helps to provide a “safe haven” for students who are already facing challenges as they begin their college experience.

“The ultimate goal of every staff person who works with the SSS program is for our students to earn a bachelor’s degree,” she said. “We go above and beyond to try to retain them here at TROY and to keep them on the path to success throughout their college journey. The students realize that they are getting that special attention, and they know that someone truly cares about their success. It is gratifying when students return after graduation and tell us that they may not have realized the dream of earning their degree had it not been for Student Support Services.”