Mt. Carmel ,IL- October has been a busy month for the Illinois Eastern Community Colleges TRIO Student Support Services program. Because of the new FAFSA rules by which students can now apply for Federal student aid starting October 1 for the following academic year, each college in the IECC District held a campus-specific workshop designed solely for the purpose of its students applying early for FAFSA for the 2017-2018 academic year. At this time, over 50% of the program’s students have applied for Federal aid for next year.
WVC TRIO SSS students Mackenzie Jackson (left) and April Dorney (right) were two of the students who visited Oakland City University during the week of October 28.
The week of October 28, there were two university visits. WVC TRIO SSS first went to Oakland City University where students were given the opportunity to speak with an advisor in the Education Department, visit with OCU’s TRIO director, and get a walking tour of campus. That same week students from all four IECC colleges were given the opportunity to visit and tour Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. Since transfer to a four-year university is one of the program’s objectives, visits like these occur frequently during the year. Presently the program’s academic counselors are preparing for the November workshop. This second workshop (the program offers four a year) is designed to facilitate the transfer process. A presentation will be given on how to complete a successful transfer, and the students will go to the College Fair given on OCC’s campus that day.
The program is also busy with community service. For Halloween, LTC TRIO SSS helped with Trick or Treat at the Trail, and FCC TRIO SS Club was involved with FCC Trunk or Treat. Each year the program’s Leadership Development classes on each campus have created and implemented its own community service activity.