The Student Support Services (SSS) counselor orients students to the array of support services provided by the counseling component and those of the other SSS components, including how to request the services. Furthermore, as appropriate, the counselor enlightens students on the requirements of the majors, departments and schools that require a formal application for admission.
Students may be experiencing difficulty in a course (or courses) and may, therefore, seek the help of the SSS counselor. The counselor interviews the students in order to determine whether the source of difficulty of the students is the lack of proper academic skills or some other factor. If the source seems to be the former, the counselor uses diagnostics to help the students assess their academic strengths as well as weaknesses. The students are also referred to the Tutorial Coordinator for tutorial services.
Students who are undecided or who wish to change their major will participate in an initial conference with the SSS counselor in order to discuss thoughts regarding a career choice. The conference will include what has been or is presently being considered by the students and what has been suggested by significant others such as parents, relatives, or instructors. The goal is for students, using a process of elimination, to build confidence which will result in them making decisions that will promote their academic as well as future success. The SSS counselor assists students with their career concerns from freshmen through senior year. Upperclassmen are assisted in setting career and job hunting goals, writing effective resumes, and developing their interview skills.
Graduate School Guidance
Students may receive assistance from the SSS component regarding any aspect of making a decision about and/or gaining admission to graduate or professional school. The counselor may work with students on an individual basis and/or refer the students to Alcorn State University’s Graduate and Professional School conference as well as SSS workshops on graduate school. In both contexts, students are able to learn facts in relation to the benefits of attending graduate school, how to obtain financial aid for graduate study, and how to choose a graduate or professional school as well as details regarding each step in the application process. The counselor will also urge students to attend the free graduate school trips that SSS offers.
The SSS counselor assists students in dealing with the following issues: adjusting to college, managing stress, developing leadership skills, resisting negative peer pressure, increasing patience, building popularity, improving peer and professional relationships, becoming more assertive, enhancing self-image, building confidence, and improving problem-solving skills.
Assessments and Workshops
A wide variety of informative and developmental programs are planned for students, ranging from stress management to financial literacy.
SSS provides incoming participants with Student Success Assistants (SSA) who serve as peer mentors. The SSAs are upper class participants who promote the integration of new students into the academic and social community of Alcorn State University.
The SSAs develop and sharpen their leadership skills as they assist the new students in adjusting to campus life.
The counselor plans lectures, tours, trips, theatrical productions, professional games and a variety of other events to enhance students’ personal growth and to assist in broadening the knowledge of students.