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Frequently Asked Questions

What is TRIO?

TRIO is a group of federally funded college opportunity programs that motivate and give academic support to students seeking associate degrees. The Educational Opportunity Act of 1964 established a program known as Upward Bound. In 1965, the Higher Education Act developed a Talent Search program. Finally, another program, Special Services for Disadvantaged Students (later known as Student Support Services), was launched in 1968. Together, this "trio" of federally funded programs encouraged access to higher education for limited-income students. By 1998, the TRIO programs had become a vital pipeline to opportunity, serving traditional students, displaced workers and veterans. The original three programs had grown to eight, adding Educational Opportunity Centers in 1972, the Training Program for Federal TRIO programs in 1976, the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program in 1986, Upward Bound Math/Science in 1990, and the TRIO Dissemination Partnership in 1998.

The TRIO program at Heartland Community College is part of the federal Trio Student Support Services program and is called Project RISE (Resources to Increase Student Excellence). It is funded by the U.S. Department of education for $238,496 annually. (return to top)

What does Project RISE do?

The Project RISE program exists to help students Heartland Community College remain in college, graduate, and transfer to their chosen four-year educational institution. (return to top)

What services does Project RISE offer?

Project RISE offers a number of services created to increase success for students at Heartland Community College (HCC). These services include customized assistance in the following areas: financial literacy counseling , academic counseling, career counseling, transfer counseling, a college course for first-year college students, and a college course for transferring college students. In addition, the program offers other supports necessary for success in college such as mentoring, college skills workshops, visits to in state four-year institutions and educational cultural enrichment activities. (return to top)

What kinds of college workshops does Project RISE provide?

Project RISE provides numerous college skill and success workshops each semester. Some workshop topics may include: Budget Your College Dollars; Secure Your Credit; Smooth Transition to a Four-Year College; Studying Smarter, Not Harder; Math Success; Time Management; Stress Management; and Career and Scholarship Quest. We encourage students to suggest other topics and provide feedback on all Project RISE activities. (return to top)

What are the requirements to join Project RISE?

You must either be first-generation college student (defined as neither parent having obtained a bachelor's degree); a limited-income student (defined by federal guidelines); and/or have a documented disability.

In addition, a student must meet all of the following criteria: Be a U.S. citizen or legal resident (must qualify for federal aid); have academic need; and take at least 12 credits per semester at Heartland Community College with the intent of working toward a degree and transferring to a four-year college. (return to top)

How do I apply?

Students can pick up an application in the Project RISE office, located in Room SCB1000 of the Student Commons Building. You can also complete our application electronically. The Project RISE program generally accepts new students/applications during the fall semester of each year. (return to top)

What does the application process include?

After completing the Project RISE application and submitting financial documentation (copies of your or your parents' most recent tax returns or Student Aid Report - SAR - from FAFSA), students are scheduled for a personal interview with one of the Project RISE staff members. (return to top)

How will I know if I am accepted into Project RISE?

After the interview, pending verification of eligibility requirements and vacancies within the program, students are informed of their status by standard mail and by email. The student then needs to schedule a meeting with their Project RISE advisor. In addition, the student needs to sign up for Workshops and Cultural Events as well as attend any Learning in Communities course (LinC); or enroll in the Project RISE First-Year Experience course (a special section of GENS 100 designed for Project RISE students) or the Project Rise Second-Year Transition Course (a special section of the GENS 101 course designed for Project RISE students) as per what is recommended during their interview. (return to top)

What if I am not accepted into the program?

If you are notified that you have not been accepted, the letter you receive after the interview will specify the reason that students are not accepted into the program. If there is any confusion, the best thing to do is to either call or come by the office for us to explain specifically a denial was issued. It is possible that you can submit additional information in order to have this status changed. (return to top)

Who can I contact if I have further questions?

Stop by our office in located in Room SCB1000 of the Student Commons Building or call (309) 268-8404. (return to top)