JONESBORO — The U.S. Department of Education has awarded Arkansas State University a grant of $1.5 million over a five-year period to continue funding for student retention and completion initiatives.

The grant funds the university’s Student Support Services (SSS) program, which promotes retention and academic success for students who qualify as first-generation, low-income or disabled.

SSS, one of three federally funded programs that are collectively referenced as TRIO programs, provides participating students with services such as tutoring, advising, career coaching, mentoring, workshops, graduate school preparation, and supplemental advocacy.

Dr. Jill Simons, associate vice chancellor for academic services and dean of University College, noted, “A‑State’s SSS program has a long history of helping students reach their academic goals in a timely manner. The renewal of this grant allows deserving students additional support so more first-generation students can graduate from college.”

“Our office is very excited to have received this funding,” added Jerrod Lockhart, director of Student Support Services. “The services we provide are very valuable to students and adds to our institution’s theme of ‘Every Red Wolf Counts.’ ”

The grant funding will allow for 175 student participants each year, he added.

Additional details about Student Support Services at Arkansas State University are available by contacting Lockhart, jlockhar@AState .edu or (870) 972-2320.

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