Sacramento State’s Services to Students with Disabilities program has been awarded a five-year, $1.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education, with $267,367 allotted for 2015-16. The funding will serve approximately 140 students each year.

“Many students with disabilities struggle to make it to and through college,” says Melissa Repa, co-director of Sac State’s Services to Students with Disabilities and director of the federal TRIO Student Support Services Program.

“However, the services provided through the program – such as support coordination, tutoring and instruction, disability-related counseling, specialized instructional materials, financial aid referrals, and other activities and guidance – provide them the additional support they need to complete their education in a timely manner.”

Sac State has received federal TRIO Student Support Services Program funding continuously since 1976, with the previous five-year grant awarded in 2010.

“This grant is a testament to the importance that Sacramento State places on student success, as funding from it will allow the university to provide additional instruction, counseling, and assistance to the students that need it the most,” says Congresswoman Doris Matsui, who announced the grant.

“I am pleased that the federal government is partnering with Sacramento State to ensure students have the resources they need to graduate on time and with the skills required to succeed in the 21st century economy.”

The funding is an integral part of the University’s efforts to retain and graduate students with disabilities, including those who come from low-income backgrounds.

“Here at Sacramento State, we have long been proud of our Student Support Services for students with disabilities,” says President Robert S. Nelsen. “The awarding of this grant for the second time in five years recognizes the program’s effort to help our students with disabilities succeed and furthers the University’s mission of achieving diversity and access to a quality education. Congresswoman Matsui’s efforts to secure this grant, and her continued support for all Sacramento State students, are greatly appreciated.”

In addition to the 140 students who will benefit directly from the renewed federal TRIO grant each year, Sacramento State’s Services for Students with Disabilities serves more than 800 students each year. – Dixie Reid