Spring TRiO Academic Awards honors hardworking students

On May 2 the TRiO program at Bellevue College awarded students’ achievements who used the TRiO resource program.

The Academic Awards ceremony was hosted by Barbara Brodsky, director of TRiO-Student Support Services in N-201. It has been a 12-year tradition to celebrate the academic achievements of TRiO students every quarter. These students are graduating from BC or transferring to at least eleven universities around Washington state.

TRiO students were awarded academic excellence certificates (Bronze, Silver and Gold-depending on GPA), TRiO pins and plates.

Students Mustapha Ennaimy and Hodan Hassan shared their success stories.

Ennaimy came to the U.S. when he won the lottery in his home country of Morocco for a green card and was surprised when he was selected since he had forgotten he had even applied.

Ennaimy was determined to receive a college degree ever since his high school math teacher undermined the success of students’ whose parents did not receive a college degree.

He is now transferring to the University of Washington where he hopes to major in electrical engineering.

The other speaker, Hassan, spoke of the support she received at TRiO and how it soon became the space where she studied, made decisions and chatted with Brodsky. TRiO enriched her stay at BC and she misses it now that she has transferred to UW where she aims to become a lawyer.

Both speakers and the host, Barbara Brodsky, thanked the advisors at TRiO for their hard work and excellent service.

Asha Soulaiman, an attendee and receiver of a Bronze certificate award ,said it felt wonderful to have achieved so much. Excited about her graduation and how near it is, Soulaiman hopes to continue her studies at UW and to major in medical technology. Like many other participants each award was received with a grin, (a joke) and a camera flash.

Ennaimy found the ceremony “fun”, he encouraged students to join and take advantage of the resources offered at TRiO, which include advising, support, tutoring and even a computer lab. TRiO students are loaned textbooks, laptops and calculators.

TRiO gets its name from the three services it offers: Upward Bound, Talent Search and Student Support Services. It is funded by a federal grant that set guidelines to who can it can assist. The program engages first generation college students with limited income, or disabilities.

Brodsky started with the program at BC 12 years ago, in the fall of 2001. “We try to provide them with whatever they may need while a student here at BC and it can be personal support, academic support, or financial guidance.”

Brodsky explained that TRiO guides students through transferring to four-year universities, both through the paper work and transfer-shock. TRiO takes trips to these universities and recommend workshops that aim to make transfer as easy as possible.

Students must meet the criteria of either low income, first generation (neither parent has a bachelor’s degree), or have a documented disability to be able to apply for TRiO. This application can be made both online and at the B-building where the TRiO office is located.