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MCC receives new TRIO grant

Marshalltown Community College has been notified that it will receive a new U.S. Department of Education TRIO Student Support Services (SSS) grant in the amount of $726,750 over the next five years. The TRIO SSS grants fund opportunities for student academic development and serve to assist and motivate students toward the successful completion of their college educations.

“The goal of the TRIO SSS program is to increase college retention and graduation rates of qualified participants and to help students make the transition from one level of higher education to the next,” explains Cindy Schulte, IVCCD Director of Governmental Affairs. TRIO SSS services are available to qualified low-income, first-generation or disabled college students to foster an institutional climate supportive of their success.

Nate Chua, MCC Director of Retention and Learning Services/TRIO SSS Director, crafted the MCC narrative that was submitted for the TRIO SSS grant funding. The college’s previous five-year TRIO SSS award was for $750,000.

Chua reports, “The success of the MCC project over the last cycle really solidified our desire to apply for a new grant award. While our outstanding staff will continue to provide the programs and services that resulted in strong retention, graduation, and transfer rates, this new grant cycle allows us to further challenge students and push them to even greater heights. These last five years have proven that TRIO works, and we take great pride in the accomplishments of all of our TRIO participants and alumni.”

At MCC, the improved educational outcomes for TRIO SSS participants will include persisting from year to year, remaining in good academic standing, graduating, and transferring to colleges or universities that offer baccalaureate degree programs. The college will continue to address TRIO participant barriers to success, which include difficulty working through formal processes, lack of study and/or critical thinking skills, and reluctance to ask for assistance from instructors, staff or peers.

MCC TRIO SSS staff members will work with qualified students by providing assistance in filling out financial aid forms, developing course schedules, providing supplemental or developmental instruction as needed, involving them in peer study groups, offering financial literacy workshops, providing transfer counseling, providing online tutoring, providing opportunities for cultural engagement to enhance learning outside the classroom, and addressing other needs as appropriate.

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