Student wearing TRiO sash with graduation robe

TRIO Student Support Services (TRIO SSS)

Welcome to TRIO SSS

Here at TRIO Student Support Services (SSS) our goal is to provide you with services, resources, and information to help you succeed in your classes. We want to see you walk across that stage at graduation. We want to celebrate with you when you obtain your Associate Degree and transfer to a four year University.

Let us support you in Going West and Going Far!

Program Activities and Services Include:

  • Have an accountability partner, someone who supports you throughout your entire time at West
  • Develop relationships with TRIO SSS staff who were also first generation college students and have been where you are
  • Stay up to date with important WLAC and transfer/ financial aid deadlines with TRIO SSS text messages
  • Receive newsletters that provide additional tips and tricks that TRIO SSS staff have learned from attending yearly counselor conferences and federal trainings geared at helping you succeed
  • TRIO SSS is federally funded, which means that we cannot provide financial support, such as book vouchers, application fee waivers, etc.. We highly recommend another great WLAC support program, EOPS, for such services.

  • Hour long academic advising appointments with your TRIO SSS counselors
  • Get help deciding which school is right for you: CSU vs UC vs private vs out of state
  • Have conversations about what major is right for you
  • Go on campus tours (including virtual explorations)
  • Get assistance with transfer applications and supplemental applications
  • Learn how to craft your UC written prompts and get help with editing
  • Connect with other TRIO programs and transfer students at the school of your choice
  • Have someone who knows your story, write your letters of recommendations( like to EOP at the four year and for scholarships)
  • Get one-on-one tutoring when it works for you

  • get help with filling out the FAFSA
  • get help finding school specific scholarships
  • have support in writing your academic appeal to reinstate financial aid

  • Learn how to create a resume that will get you noticed and how write the perfect cover letter,
  • Learn mindfulness techniques and ways to balance work, life, school,
  • Take advantage of in-office printing, scanning, scantrons, text book library, and supplies
  • Experience cultural events with your TRIO SSS friends (past examples include going to the San Diego Zoo, Catalina Island, Cirque du Soleil, Broadway plays, and more)

Current WLAC students who are U.S. citizens, meet federal residence guidelines, or meet the residency requirements for federal student financial assistance (Pell Grant)...

AND at LEAST ONE of the following:

  • A first-generation college student (Meaning whoever you lived with prior to the age of 18 did not have a four-year Bachelor degree when raising you at that time) OR
  • Low-income as defined by federal income guidelines OR
  • A part of the WLAC Disabled Students Programs and Services (DSPS)

However, we are a small, federally funded program that serves only 160 West Los Angeles College students, and we admit students as space permits. Therefore, please be patient during the application process. Email Dalia Soto-Beltran at @email to learn more about the application process.

  • There is no GPA requirement.
  • There is no Unit requirement.
  • It doesn't matter if you are in your 1st year at WLAC or your 10th year, as long as WLAC is your home school and you are taking classes at WLAC, you can join TRIO SSS at anytime.
  • You can also be a part of more than one support program. So yes, you can be a part of other wonderful programs like CalWORKs or EOPS AND be a part of TRIO SSS.
  • TRIO SSS is a nationwide program, meaning that there may be other TRIO SSS at other community colleges and Universities. The program application and requirements are specific for each location.
  • Reminder: TRIO SSS is federally funded, which means that we cannot provide financial support, such as book vouchers, application fee waivers, etc.. We highly recommend another great WLAC support program, EOPS, for such services.

TRIO SSS Participant Testimonials

"TRIO SSS is a family away from home. They really truly do care for their students and will always go above and beyond for them no matter what. It was a great honor to be accepted as one of the members of this great family and I am forever grateful for the love and support, as well guidance and listening ear every leader of this program gave to me. Thank you all so very much and I wish everyone the entire best." - L.A.

"It’s not only helped me with school, but with my mental health. I knew I could come in and have safe place to be myself, to just be when the rest of the world felt like it was falling apart." - G.A.

"TRIO SSS was amazing! They helped me stay on track and complete my degree in two years. I especially liked that there was a dedicated counselor available, they had awesome tutors, and overall the staff were extremely helpful." -K.D.

"TRIO SSS has been a remarkable experience. From providing me a job to being an extended family trio has been truly amazing. Everyone in TRIO is amazing and truly care about success. And TRIO takes care of all your needs from printing to tutoring and we have some along the way. I tell everyone there are two programs I recommend on this campus, EOPS AND TRIO SSS. EOPS helps with financial needs and TRIO SSS helps with the rest." - D.D.

"TRIO SSS, was by far the best thing that I could have been apart of while attending WLAC. I found the staff to be extremely welcoming, knowledgeable, kind, and helpful in every aspect- my only regret is not joining sooner. TRIO SSS offers great tutors, and services that are insightful and useful for real world problems e.g: putting together your resume, applying for scholarships, etc. I hope that more people become aware of this wonderful program, and join as it is extremely important and beneficial." -K.H.

"Joining TRIO SSS was something I was not expecting to do when returning to college but I'm very glad I did, I felt supported knowing there was a group of people looking out for me compared to seeing a counselor once and that they see hundreds of students in a day. It's nice having that support system there if you need and and that they know what they're talking about to get you ahead of the game. Even though this semester didn't go as planned with our current situation, I still felt a part of the group and didn't feel like I was left behind. I still felt like I had the support from TRIO through the emails and the option to have online meetings. I'm very glad to have been able to find out about TRIO and join because I feel like I actually have guidance on how to transfer out into a 4-year university with confidence." -S.S.

"TRIO has helped me focus in on what classes I need to take to complete my degree here at WLAC. They have encouraged me to face me fears of taking a math class so to their tutoring and support. It was a tough semester and I could not have made it through without TRIO. Amazing support! I am very happy with the diligence of the leaders of the program." - M.W.

History of TRIO SSS at West LA College

WLAC received its first Department of Education grant award to establish TRIO SSS at the college in the Fall of 2001. The grant has been consecutively renewed every five-year grant cycle since that time. TRIO SSS is pleased to announce that the U.S. Department of Education has approved the renewal of the grant for five years which will extend the program to August 31, 2025!

History of Federal TRIO Programs

The history of TRIO is progressive. It began with Upward Bound, which emerged out of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 in response to Lyndon B. Johnson's administration's War on Poverty. In 1965, Talent Search, the second outreach program, was created as part of the Higher Education Act. In 1968, Student Support Services, which was originally known as Special Services for Disadvantaged Students, was authorized by the Higher Education Amendments and became the third in a series of educational opportunity programs. By the late 1960s, the term "TRIO" was coined to describe these federal programs.

Over the years, the TRIO Programs have been expanded and improved to provide a wider range of services and to reach more students who need assistance. The Higher Education Act Amendments of 1972 added the fourth program to the Trio group by authorizing the Educational Opportunity Centers. The 1976 Education Amendments authorized the Training Program for Federal Trio Programs, initially known as the Training Program for Special Programs Staff and Leadership Personnel. Amendments in 1986 added the sixth program, the Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program. Additionally, in 1990, the Department created the Upward Bound Math/Science Program to address the need for specific instruction in the fields of math and science.

Adapted from The US Department of Education - Office of Postsecondary Education website.

Office Hours

Mondays to Fridays: 9:00AM - 2:00PM
Saturdays to Sundays: Closed

TURN AROUND TIME: 24 hours weekdays


Shannon Kobes
Email: @email

Dalia Soto-Beltran
Email: @email

TRIO SSS Live Chat