Student Success at the Core of Albion College’s $1.3 Million TRIO/SSS Grant

The five-year program through the U.S. Department of Education will provide a wide range of student support services to 140 students annually.

September 15, 2020

The path to student success goes way beyond the classroom. Sometimes that includes a quiet afternoon of studying in a hammock on the Quad.

In another step toward providing students an opportunity to thrive in a liberal arts environment, Albion College has been awarded a five-year, nationally competitive U.S. Department of Education/TRIO Student Support Services grant totaling more than $1.3 million.

In that time period, the grant will support 140 students annually who are from low-income or first-generation backgrounds or have disabilities. This grant aligns directly with Albion’s shared commitment to purpose, belonging and action and will further define and strengthen the work of the new Sarah S. and Alexander M. Cutler Center for Student Success and Academic Achievement, made possible by the $8 million Cutler gift, the largest in school history.

“So many people, across campus and led by Anne-Marie Berk, [lead director of corporate and foundation relations], worked on Albion’s TRIO application,” said Dr. Shannon O’Neill, associate dean for student success and Cutler Center director. “That we were selected for this Student Support Services grant is a testament to their effort and Albion’s commitment to serving first-generation and low-income students. The TRIO program will be integrated with all of the services that Cutler is bringing together, and it can’t help but result in all students being better served.”

For the student participants, the grant will provide academic programming, personalized guidance with course selection and student financial aid programs, resources for locating public and private scholarships, assistance in completing aid applications, programming on financial and economic literacy, support for exploring and matriculating into graduate and professional school programs, and additional personalized services focused on advancing student success.

“National competition for SSS awards is steep and Albion’s ability to garner one is a testament to the efforts of so many people on campus,” said Dr. Mathew Johnson, president of Albion College. “It will now be up to an even broader, campus-wide collaborative effort to maximize the impact of the TRIO/SSS grant for many Albion College students in the years ahead. It will be exciting and enriching to see just how many ways this grant will benefit Albion’s students and how these new resources will augment the very generous Cutler gift.”