WASHINGTON — U.S. Sens. Olympia J. Snowe and Susan Collins announced Saturday that the Department of Education has awarded a combined $2,721,249 in grant funding to eight Maine colleges under the Department’s Student Support Services Program. SSS provides academic and other support services to educational institutions to assist low-income, first-generation, and students with disabilities to increase their retention and graduation rates, and foster a supportive environment for their success and achievement.
SSS is one of the federal TRIO programs, which are outreach and student services programs designed to identify and provide support for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. Snowe and Collins have been strong supporters of TRIO programs.
“TRIO programs truly help open the door to the American dream,” the senators said. “They help our students break through the social and cultural barriers that often prevent low-income or first-generation students from accessing a college education. This critical funding will help more Maine students attend college and receive the education they require to pursue their dreams.”
The grant awards will be distributed as follows: $255,504 to Northern Maine Community College, $310,996 to the University of Maine at Presque Isle, $252,505 to Washington County Community College, $579,180 to the University of Maine, $293,863 to the University of Maine Farmington, $500,188 to the University of Maine at Augusta, $290,517 to Central Maine Community College and $238,496 to York County Community College