Student Support Services: A one stop shop for students

By Brittney Payette

Student Life Editor

Cameron University’s Student Support Services program is designed to give eligible students academic support to help them succeed.

Cathleen Dutton, the Freshman Guidance Specialist for SSS believes that the program is an excellent support system.

“It is there for you from the time that you enter the program to the time that you graduate,” Dutton said.

SSS is federally funded by the U.S. Department of Education,. The department granted Cameron University $460,680.00 for the 2020-2021 school year.

To be eligible for SSS, the student must meet one of the following factors: be a first generation college student, have a documented disability or meet income requirements.

Students that receive the Pell grant usually qualify for SSS.

Students also must express an academic need, which is determined by the advisor who does the interview.

The application process also requires that students submit either their independent taxes or their parent’s taxes (if they are considered to be a dependent). The taxes must be signed.

If the individual applying is already an enrolled college student, then SSS will get the academic transcript themselves.

There is also an evaluation interview in which the advisor looks at what they can help the student with.

During the interview, the advisor talks with the student to figure out what that person’s strengths and weaknesses are to create an individual learning plan.

Students can go to the Cameron University website, search for Student Support Services, and SSS is under Office of Teaching and Learning.

There is an application link for SSS on the Cameron website.

Additionally, students can go to the fourth floor of North Shepler in room 431 to pick up a paper application.

Tina Alley is an academic advisor for SSS, and she described SSS as a one stop shop.

“We are here to help students with almost anything that they need to succeed in college,” Alley said.

SSS has many resources available to their members. They have their own computer lab, which is on the fourth floor of North Shepler.

They have writing and math tutoring lab just for SSS members,
which is separate from Cameron’s labs. SSS’s labs serve fewer students, which allows more students get one-on-one time with a tutor.

SSS members also get advisement to assist them with their college experience.

“Individual advisement consists of picking out your classes, helping you decide your degree goals, your career goals, and things like that,” Alley said.

Alley said that SSS helps students keep on track with their classes and does a lot of what the advising center does, but since they serve less students, they can spend more time advising each student.

Another one of the resources that SSS offers is called Virtual Job Shadow, which is essentially an online portfolio for students where they can start to build resumes, make goals and research information about different careers based on their interests.

The program also offers workshops throughout the semester that help students with things such as test taking strategies, financial literacy and how to manage stress.

SSS also has a leadership team, which is made up of students that have at least been in SSS for one semester and maintain at least a 2.5 GPA or higher.

The team’s participants serve as ambassadors for the program, doing volunteer work, recruiting more students, and mentoring other members of SSS. These students also help with activities such as Homecoming.

For more information, contact SSS at (580) 581-2352 or email studentsupportservices@cameron.edu.

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