Kimberly Kost

Laura Gittings-Carlson

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Welcome to the SSS/TRIO Staff Page!  

My name is Laura.  I started college by obtaining an Associates Degree while working full-time to pay for tuition, right out of high school.  After this degree, I decided to take some time off and work.  About seven years later, I felt I was ready to go back to college.  As an older, nontraditional student I received my Bachelor's of Science in Sociology & Anthropology from MSU-Bozeman while working three-quarters to full-time.  Fast forward a few more years and I completed my Master's in Public Administration at MSU Billings while working full-time and taking care of a busy family.  I enjoy creating artwork, listening to music, learning new things, and spending time with my husband, two boys, and our dogs.

Tracie Musso
Tracie Musso
Academic Coordinator

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My college career began at the age of eighteen, fresh out of high school, in my home state of Florida. I quickly learned that I was not ready for the rigors of academic life. After some life experience, including moving across the country to Montana, I decided to return to college at the age of thirty. I attended college full-time while working and raising two sons, and proudly graduated from MSUB in 2006 with a Bachelor of Arts in English and Secondary Teaching Certification. For the next eleven years, I taught at-risk and   adjudicated delinquent teens and young adults in Billings and Sheridan, Wyoming. In 2018, I found my way home to Billings and the MSUB campus. I love learning and wholly believe in the limitless potential of developing a Growth Mindset. I enjoy spending time with my children and playing around with photography and ceramics.  

Stephen Stefan
Academic Counselor

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Hello, I grew up in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania. Before attending Mansfield University, I took a year off between high school and college. While obtaining my Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Media: Broadcasting and Creative Writing Minor, I was a first generation college student who participated in TRiO SSS. In my senior year, I served other students as a TRiO Peer Mentor. I also completed my Master’s Degree in Strategic Public Relations from Shippensburg University. After graduate school, I moved to Montana to volunteer with the AmeriCorps VISTA program. I spent my AmeriCorps service doing Economic Development in Red Lodge. In my free time, I enjoy working out, photography, writing, hiking, traveling, and learning.  

Kimberly Kost

Sonja Jones
Program Coordinator

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Hello, My name is Sonja Jones (Choriki). I grew up in Billings, MT and graduated from MSUB with a B.S. in Criminal Justice. Throughout my college career, I was very involved with several organizations and spent my last year as the Student Body President for MSUB. I also worked for the TRiO Upward Bound summer programs while I was on campus and was a part of the TRiO program ETS growing up. In the future, I plan to go back to school and receive my masters and possibly a PHD. In my free time, I like to stay active. I enjoy golfing, snowboarding, archery, hiking, fishing, and horseback riding. If it’s an outdoor activity, I probably enjoy it, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I’m any good at it!