Student Support Services (SSS)

outside group photo in front of MLK monument
Trio Student Support Services

What  We Do

Our main goal is to get students to reach the most important milestone in college, graduation. We encourage you to have a positive experience at RIC by providing enough support for students to feel confident in their ability as a scholar, and courageous enough to succeed no matter the obstacle faced. If you are interested in taking that risk, join SSS.

Here are some of the benefits of being an SSS student at RIC:

  • One-on-One Advising & Counseling 
  • Assistance with the Financial Aid Process 
  • Work with SSS Tutors
  • Seminars & Workshops with the SSS community 
  • Advice through the Graduate School Application Process
  • Cultural Events & Leadership Activities
  • Access to SSS Grant Aid Scholarships (for eligible students) 

Eligibility 

  • Enrolled at Rhode Island College
  • Be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident 

Meet at least one of the following criteria:

  1. First generation college student (neither parent, or guardian has a bachelor's degree)
  2. Meet the Federal TRIO Program Low-income Levels
  3. Have a documented disability 
Apply Today!

When thinking of a place where you will be met with care and love, SSS is the first space I think of. Within the office you’re met with individuals who care for you as a student and being. The SSS team will water you as you blossom and continue to pour into you. I have never felt more visible in an environment like I have in SSS. The endless support has allowed me to thrive within all spaces I enter, and I have the SSS team to thank for supporting me in finding myself.
- Cienna De Los Santos, Youth Development Major

To say SSS impacted my college experience is an understatement. They have provided me with all types of support I feel I would have never received anywhere else. They always made sure I was on track and on top of all my work. They taught me to be more outspoken and unafraid to put myself out there. Overall, I would say SSS has provided me with academic skills I did not know I needed, but also skills I will apply outside of school in the real world. And for that I am thankful to the SSS program.
- Cisco Gonzalez, Justice Studies and Sociology Double Major

Meet the Team

Precious Kafo

Precious Kafo

My name is Precious Kafo and I am the Director of SSS and PEP. I have been working at RIC for about 7 years, and I am happy that I get to work with such wonderful and brilliant students! I attended URI and earned my bachelor’s degree and Master’s in Human Development there. As an intern in my Master’s program, I worked with PEP. I fell in love with the RIC community and returned about a year after I graduated! I enjoy making people laugh, eating good food, and binge-watching tv shows. Nothing is more fulfilling than helping students navigate a complex environment and have the ability to flourish academically and personally. 

Mackenzie Williams

Mackenzie Williams

Hi SSS Scholars! My name is Mackenzie Williams, and I am the Assistant Director of Student Support Services (SSS). I attended Providence College for both my graduate and undergraduate studies, but my passion for education began in high school when I started tutoring my classmates in math and realized how rewarding it can be to help others learn things, they thought they never could. Ever since I have dedicated my career to breaking down barriers that discourage students from pursuing higher education and providing them with the tools they need to be successful long after they graduate. I have worked in the Center for Scholar Development for two years as an intern for the McNair Scholars program and, most recently, as an advisor for the Preparatory Enrollment Program (PEP). My work has given me the opportunity to learn just as much from the exceptional students that I serve, as they have learned from me. I look forward to working with and learning from all of you in my new role. I am confident that there is no limit to what we can accomplish as a team; the biggest rewards are yet to come! You can email me at mwilliams@ric.edu

Ronya Traynham

Ronya Traynham

Hi SSS Scholars! My name is Ronya Traynham, and I am the Transfer Advisor for Student Support Services (SSS). I am also a Rhode Island College and McNair Scholar Alumni, and I am super excited to return to the RIC family! During my undergrad, I transferred to RIC from CCRI and double majored in Youth Development and Black Studies. My passion has always been in social justice and student advising. I have a passion for helping students achieve their academic and personal goals. During my time as a student, I was involved in multiple clubs and organizations on campus, I was the secretary for Harambee and the president of Youth development org. I also served as a Student Leader on the Dialogue in Diversity and Inclusion committee and was a Residential Assistant for Sweet Hall. Even though I was proactive on campus, my path to my degree was not easy. However, what encouraged me to keep going was the amazing mentors and advisors I met along the way. It reminded me of a family mantra that was told to me as a little girl which was “closed mouths don’t get fed.” Meaning, it is important to realize it takes a network of people to help you achieve your dreams. This is what I want for you, but without all of the difficult roadblocks, I went through when I was too ashamed to ask for help. I promise to be a guide on your journey to success. You can email me at rtraynham@ric.edu

Destiny Zepeda

Destiny Zepeda

Hi SSS Scholars! My name is Destiny Zepeda, and I am the newest Advisor for Student Support Services (SSS). I may be a familiar face to some in the office as I am a recent RIC graduate, and I was a mentor in CREAR Futuros. I was also part of PEP/SSS as I am a first-generation student. I loved this office so much I started working here. SSS became my home on campus, where I could connect and build community. Since I was younger, I always wanted to work with youth in some capacity because I was raised in a home daycare, I was so used to helping everyone. I did not realize that I wanted to work specifically with first generation students until last year when I did CREAR Futuros as my internship. Working with first-generation students lighted a spark, I enjoyed helping students that I saw myself in and helping them figure stuff out brought me joy. As first-generation students we come from so much pressure from our families but also ourselves, but we will always be able to figure it out. I am looking forward to building connections with all of you! I hope you stop by my office to chat or if you ever need any help, please feel free to contact me at dzepeda@ric.edu.

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Faculty/Staff Referral

If you know a student who might be interested in or benefit from SSS, please use this form to provide us their information. The SSS team will review your form and contact the student.

Apply to be a SSS Tutor

Overview of Tutoring

Student Success Services (SSS) tutors are asked to provide academic support to undergraduate students enrolled in the SSS and STEM programs. 

You will help students one-on-one or in small groups to review their assignments, course syllabi, preparing for tests/quizzes and help them organize and manage time and responsibilities. 

Requirements to be a Tutor

Expectations and requirements to be a SSS Tutor:

  • Undergraduate or Graduate Student 
  • Completed 30+ credits
  • Minimum GPA of a 3.0
  • Strong Organizational, Interpersonal and Problem Solving Skills

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Previous Tutoring Experience  
  • Served as a Peer Leader

Salary

Undergraduate Student Tutors

$12-15 per hour

Graduate Student Tutors

$15-20 per hour

Application Process

Tutor Application

If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Precious Kafo, the SSS Project Director. 

Rhode Island College entrance

Precious Kafo

Project Director II

TRIO

Student Support Services