LSU University College’s Student Support Services Awarded $1.6 Million Grant

UC SummerBATON ROUGE – LSU University College’s Student Support Services, or SSS, was recently awarded a $1,684,855 grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The grant funds will provide an additional five years of support for Student Support Services, a U.S. Department of Education TRIO grant program.

“Initially funded in 1978, Student Support Services was the first retention program on the LSU campus. Over the past 38 years, Student Support Services has created a legacy for working with students from diverse and at-risk backgrounds, identifying their needs for support, serving them to graduation and leading them to successful careers. It has been through the use of best practice research that we have established successful programs that result in success for low-income, first generation, and students with disabilities,” said Deborah Hollier, director of University College’s Student Support Services. “I am excited that Student Support Services will continue this well-founded legacy on LSU’s campus during the next five years.”

Since 1978, Student Support Services’ vision has always focused on increasing retention and graduation rates for disadvantaged students as identified in the Higher Education Act of 1965 Revised. This five-year federal grant (2015-2020), providing more than $336,000 per year, will serve hundreds of low-income, first generation or students with disabilities who have an academic need for support. SSS participants are provided tutoring; academic, personal and career advising; financial aid and economic literacy counseling; assistance with transition to graduate programs; exposure to cultural activities; and academic programs not typically available to disadvantage students.

“Student Support Services, the academic support and counseling are amazing. They’re always keeping you on the right path, reinforcing the reason of why you are here and exploring your goals and what life has to offer,” said Ricky Richard, LSU graduate in kinesiology. “SSS provides a lot of different service projects, and these have helped me network with other LSU students. Giving back to the Baton Rouge community and world is the greatest feeling. It’s been an awesome opportunity.”

“I thank God for Student Support Services at LSU because they have provided me with the tools, support and resources to succeed, not only at LSU but in graduate school as well,” said Erineka Mulligan, LSU graduate in management & entrepreneurship. “They provided me with free tutoring, one-on-one personal advising about graduate school, free GRE prep, resume workshops, professional etiquette skills for business meetings and much more. SSS counselors are eager to assist me in preparing and planning to take the next step in my life.”

“Debbie Hollier and her staff are great champions for students who qualify for this program,” said R. Paul Ivey, executive director of LSU University College. “Thanks to the continued renewal of this TRIO grant, University College has made the Student Support Services program a mainstay of our retention efforts for students.”

Since 1933, LSU University College has served as the portal of entry for students enrolled at LSU.  Academic and personal success is the hallmark of a well-rounded student, and University College provides a foundation of support services for students beginning their academic careers at LSU. University College has two enrollment divisions: The Center for Freshman Year and The Center for Advising and Counseling.  Additionally, University College offers retention-specific programs: Student Support Services, Ronald E. McNair Research Scholars and Summer Scholars. These academic support programs focus on particular student populations and are a significant part of the role and mission of University College.


Contact Jacquelyn Craddock 
University College


Ernie Ballard
LSU Media Relations