February 25, 2019


Pedro Sosa and Madison Youlden, TRiO SSS Students

Pedro Sosa and Madison Youlden, TRiO SSS Students


MSU Billings celebrates National TRiO Day with food drive



University Communications and Marketing, 657-2266


MSU BILLINGS NEWS— National TRiO Day is celebrated across the country in the last week of February every year to commemorate the achievements of Federal TRiO outreach and student services programs, which identify and provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds.


Students benefitting from the TRiO programs often mark this day by giving back to their communities through acts of service.


Academic Coordinator, Tracie Musso, helping a student
At MSU Billings, TRiO Student Support Services (TRiO SSS) and TRiO Advocates (a student-run club) will take part in the celebration through a wide array of events  for students (see attached schedule), culminating in a Food Drive on Friday, March 1 that will benefit the MSUB Yellowjacket Emergency Food Pantry.


The pantry is run by the MSUB Center for Engagement on both the University and City College campuses. MSUB students face food insecurity when they lack access to affordable, nutritious foods, which can negatively affect their academic performance and overall health. TRiO SSS staff are partnering with the Center for Engagement to help MSUB students facing hunger.


The food pantry at MSU Billings, created in 2016, is a member of the College and University Food Bank Alliance. There are 641 member universities registered with the alliance, which indicates food insecurity on college campuses across the United States is a real issue.


Last year, at MSUB 29 students utilized the pantry. In addition, TRiO SSS provided referrals to Family Services, Inc., who are able to provide perishable items, such as meat, milk, eggs, and fresh produce.


Anyone who would like to contribute to the TRiO SSS Food Drive can bring nonperishable food items to the TRiO SSS office between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Friday, March 1. The TRiO SSS office is located in Room 141 of the Library building on the MSUB campus.


TRiO programs are administered, funded, and implemented by the United States Department of Education. TRiO includes eight programs targeted to serve and assist low-income individuals, first-generation college students, and individuals with disabilities, to progress through the academic pipeline from middle school to post-baccalaureate programs. TRiO also includes a training program for directors and staff of TRiO projects.


MSU Billings TRiO Student Support Services has been providing resources and educational opportunities for students who are low income, first generation (neither parent has a bachelor’s degree), or students with disabilities at the university for over 45 years. Students working toward a bachelor’s degree at MSUB who meet one of these criteria are encouraged to learn more about this program. Some of the services offered to program participants include peer mentoring, one-on-one and group tutoring, weekly workshops, help applying for financial aid and scholarships, referrals to on- and off-campus resources, and much more.


“Our program has the power to change the lives of college students,” says Stephen Stefan, Academic Counselor for TRiO SSS at MSUB. “TRiO SSS changed my life when I was an undergraduate. I’m happy to be interacting with students every day, knowing that I am helping them succeed.”


For more information on the TRiO SSS program or TRiO Week events, call (406) 657-2162.


»» Download TRiO Week Events poster


Photo 2 caption: (Academic Coordinator, Tracie Musso, helping a student.)