SSS Eligibility and Application
In order to be eligible, you must be currently enrolled or have been accepted for full-time study at NDSU, be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, and have at least one of the following apply to you:
- You are a first generation college student (neither parent has received a four-year degree);
- You are income eligible (family income is at or below federally determined guidelines); AND/OR
- You have a documented disability (register with Disability Services at NDSU).
Only complete applications will be considered for services. Click the button on the right to submit the following:
- Your most recent transcript (unofficial or official)
- Federal Income Tax Return—first two pages only. If you identify as an independent student (i.e. 24 years of age or older or serve in the military) submit your most current return; however, if you identify as a dependent, i.e. you are claimed by your parent/guardian, bring most current return.
- If you identify as a student with a disability, please include referral letter from Disability Services
NOTE: Students who have attained a bachelor’s degree are not eligible for the program. The only exemption is if the student has received a degree outside of the country and NDSU does not recognize it as a degree and no credits are accepted for transfer.
Application Review Process & Interview Appointment
After a complete application has been submitted to the TRIO office, an SSS Advisor will be assigned to the student by the SSS Project Director based on the students’ academic needs.
Once an SSS Advisor has been assigned, the same advisor will review the application to determine eligibility based on U.S. Department of Education criteria. Once eligibility has been determined, application will be forwarded to the front desk for processing.
After review of application and determination of eligibility:
- Student will receive an invitation for an interview with an SSS advisor.
- Information about what to expect of the interview and how to prepare will be included in the letter and on the TRIO SSS website.
- Student will need to contact the TRIO front office to schedule an appointment.
Prior to the interview:
- Student should review general tips to prepare for the interview, sample questions they may be asked, and questions they could ask of the SSS advisor.
- Students will be asked to complete a College Student Inventory (CSI) prior to their interview.
General tips which may be useful in your preparation for the Interview:
- Be Prepared: Do your homework! Research TRIO SSS materials, speak with current participants, and be prepared to discuss how we may be able to help you and how you will contribute to the growth of our program.
- Be Positive: Avoid negative comments about others and playing the blame game. Don't be afraid to admit personal mistakes, but focus on your successes and future goals.
- Be Engaged: Encourage the interviewer to discuss, in depth, the services which you identify as particularly important to your success at NDSU. It is also important that you share information about yourself and articulate the strengths you would bring to the TRIO/SSS program.
During the interview an SSS Advisor will:
- Review application materials
- Review CSI report and discuss results for example, likelihood of success based on academic motivation, general coping ability, and receptivity to services)
- Discuss academic needs, short and long term goals. An Academic Success Guide and Action Plan will be created at this meeting.
Below is a collection of common interview questions which may be ask during your interview:
- Tell me about yourself.
- What do you know about TRIO SSS?
- Why should we select you for the program?
- What brought you to NDSU?
- What would your current instructors say about you as a student?
- What is your greatest accomplishment?
- What is your ultimate career/education goal(s)?
- How do you overcome obstacles?
- Who is your strongest supporter?
- Describe your ideal learning environment.
Not sure what to ask your SSS advisor? Here are some suggestions:
- What are the benefits of your program?
- Describe your advising style.
- What expectations do you have of me as a potential participant?
- What would former participants say about your program?
- If I don't do well in my classes, what are the consequences?
- Does the program have evidence of success you may share?
- What are common barriers facing students at NDSU?
- How do you evaluate existing participants?
- Does the program offer financial support?
- How often will my advisor change?
In addition, your SSS advisor will introduce you to other SSS staff and provide you with a tour of our facilities. After your meeting, your SSS advisor will enter your information in our Blumen database, add your name to the listserv, add you to the tutoring scheduling system ("TutorTrac"), and activate your Bison card access to our tutoring and learning space ("404").
After the interview:
- Student and advisor will follow and re-assess action plan
Throughout your time at NDSU, your SSS advisor will follow up on your academic progress
General tips and interview questions taken with permission from Des Moines Area Community College, TRIO/Student Support Services