Columbia State's TRiO Program Renewed

Girl sits at table in library

(COLUMBIA, Tenn. – Aug. 10, 2015) - - -
The Department of Education has recently awarded a $219,942 grant to Columbia State Community College for the TRiO Student Support Services, which will allow the college to continue serving at-risk students at its Maury and Lawrence County campuses.

“TRiO is here to help retain and graduate the most at risk and vulnerable population of the college,” said Dr. Sherica Clark Nelms, TRiO director. “Through this grant, we can continue to provide additional support and encouragement to these students.”

The federally funded program seeks to increase the number of first-generation college and low-income students, as well as those with disabilities in order to help them successfully complete a program of study at the postsecondary level.

Clark Nelms said that in the past five years, TRiO has provided academic and other support services for more than 340 students.

Lyric McGloffin, Student Government Association president and President’s Leadership Society member, credits TRiO for much of her involvement at Columbia State. She said she may not have pushed as hard in academics or been engaged with college events and organizations as much without the support of the TRiO program and its staff.

“TRiO has helped me stay on the right path, work hard, and learn how to work more as a part of a team,” McGloffin said. “The program has opened doors for me and exposed me to transfer colleges and programs that may benefit me in the future and help me towards my career.” 

TRiO provides transfer assistance, career exploration, tutoring services, registration assistance, student success seminars and workshops, cultural and social engagement events and a number of other services that are specifically designed for students in the program. For additional information about TRiO, visit

Columbia State is a two-year college, serving a nine-county area in southern Middle Tennessee with locations in Columbia, Franklin, Lawrenceburg, Lewisburg and Clifton. As Tennessee’s first community college, Columbia State is committed to increasing access and enhancing diversity at all five campuses. Columbia State is a member of the Tennessee Board of Regents, one of the largest higher education systems in the nation. For more information, please visit

Tennessee’s Community Colleges is a system of 13 colleges offering a high-quality, affordable, convenient and personal education to prepare students to achieve their educational and career goals in two years or less. We offer associate degree and certificate programs, workforce development programs and transfer pathways to four-year degrees. For more information, please visit us online at

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