Success participants either graduated or persisted from 2016 to fall 2017 85%of TRIO Student New Program Supports 88% Asian & Asian-American Students of TRIO Student Success staff are also first-generation-to-college More than of 2016-17 TRIO Student Success participants are in Good Academic Standing More than 11 percent of MCC credit students are Asian-American. 95%of 95 college process – and she, too, graduated helped her younger sister % navigate the from Suffolk. it to campus, they can still face a constant barrage of daunting challenges, according to Buskey. “In order to be successful inProvides: TRIO college, hours of you have to understand the language of Even when first-generation students make of TRIO Student Success participants are first-generation-to-college The Program for Asian American Student Advancement (PAASA) is just getting off the ground and provides support to Asian and Asian-American students who may also be the first member of their family to attend college. “We’re working on offering a holistic support system by providing academic advising, peer mentoring, and transfer support to four-year colleges,” explained Virak Uy, PAASA Director. “Our overall goal is to promote college success, and increase persistence, graduation and transfer rates for these students.” More than 11 percent of MCC credit students are Asian-American, primarily Southeast Asian. Among that cohort, 70 percent apply for financial aid, and the majority are also from families in which they are the first to attend college, said Uy. “The work we do addresses many of the challenges that ‘first-gen’ Asian and AsianAmerican students experience,” he said. “Things like academic preparedness, learning how to navigate the financial-aid process, and balancing the stresses of work, school and family – plus issues like cultural identity and racial identity – can all affect an individual’s confidence and positive self image, and how well they do in college.” Made possible by a recent five-year, $1.7 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Asian American Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institution (AANAPISI) program, PAASA is located in the Asian American Connections Center, on the ground floor of the Cowan Building, off the Lowell Campus Cafeteria. 49 % of TRIO Student Success grads transferred to four-year-institutions 88 professional advising hours of peer a first-generation family, you don’teach week 13 tutoring know college,” she said. “If you’re coming from the language. We say things like, ‘Go pay your bill at the bursar; go to financial aid, Continued on the next page. 35 For more information about PAASA, contact Virak Uy at uyv@middlesex.mass.edu or call the Asian American Connections Center at 978-656-3447. TRIO Student Success participants graduated in 2017 Profiles | 5