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The impact faculty can have

The SSS program is always interested in collaborating with other staff and faculty members to provide services for the program participants. University faculty and staff can assist the program by becoming allies for the program participants and becoming familiar with the unique needs of this student population.

What the Research Tells Us

Reliable data from the Pell Institute can be found in their Study of Opportunity in Higher Education, which examined issues related to educational opportunities for first-generation and low income students. All reports, including those aimed at raising the graduation rate for this population, can be found at

Those faculty and staff who would like to develop professional relationships and attend conferences with others working in support of educational opportunity may consider joining the Wisconsin Association of Educational Opportunity Program Personnel (WAEOPP). This state association is affiliated with the Council for Opportunity in Education. Information about WAEOPP, including the membership form, is available on their website.

Become an Ally

There are numerous ways that faculty and staff can support the SSS program in promoting the success of eligible students on campus. We hope that you will consider becoming an ally for SSS students through the following means:

Providing Employment Information

If you have positions available for student workers or interns, we would be glad to forward that information to our SSS participants.

Offering Leadership Opportunities

If there are opportunities in your department for SSS students to gain leadership experience through involvement in organizations, advisory boards, research, publications, or projects, we would be glad to assist with outreach.

Providing Workshops

SSS offers a variety of workshops each semester to promote the academic success of project participants; see the SSS Calendar of Events and Activities.

Contribute to a scholarship

Another way to help promote the academic success of underrepresented groups is to donate to scholarships benefiting this population. See the Foundation scholarship search for options.

Eligibility requirements

SSS generally recruits students to become program participants during the summer prior to their first year at the university. However, if you are working with a student who you feel would benefit from participating in the SSS program, you may refer them to the SSS office by emailing Dr. Joy Coates.

It may assist you in pre-screening students to be aware of the federal eligibility requirements:

Participants in SSS must demonstrate a need for academic assistance (based on ACT scores, high school rank, college GPA, or other indicator) and meet one of the following conditions:

  • Be a first-generation college student (neither parent has a 4-year degree).
  • Be from a low-income household (based on federal TRIO guidelines).
  • Have a documented disability.

In addition, participants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are enrolled at UW-Eau Claire with the intention of completing a baccalaureate degree.