Hello, Amy here.
One of the extraordinary programs that UConn offers is the SSS program. SSS stands for Student Support Services. SSS falls under the Division of Undergraduate Education and Instruction’s Center for Academic Programs. Their homepage does a wonderful job of summing up their program with, “The SSS program provides mentoring, tutoring and academic counseling to students who are the first in their family to pursue a four-year college education, or who meet socioeconomic guidelines established by the federal government. Students in the SSS program participate in a six-week, seven-credit, pre-collegiate summer program that is designed to acquaint you with University coursework and enhance your opportunities for success.”
I met up with Leo Lachut, one of the counselors for SSS, to discuss his role in the program and the program’s role in the lives of UConn students. A UConn student himself, Mr. Lachut, graduated with a Bachelor’s of Arts in Communications with a focus on interpersonal communications. He then went on to receive his Master’s in Counseling at Saint Joseph College in West Hartford. Throughout his studies he gained experience in the fields of public relations, marketing, and mass communication.
Lachut’s role as a counselor is to primarily meet with students on a one to one basis. And so, he has the opportunity to work with students on appropriately managing the intersection of their academic and personal lives. However, he is going to soon assume a more administrative role as an Associative Director. An opportunity for professional growth for him and the program.
When I asked Lachut what was most challenging and rewarding for him as a counselor for SSS, he responded “students for both”. He acknowledges that it is a challenge being a student at a research one institution, like UConn, but has faith in his students’ potential to succeed. He enjoys being able to be part of the process that allows students the opportunities to study abroad, participate in national internships, go onto medical and laws schools, and of course graduate!
Happy Day! Lachut and SSS Graduates
In efforts to network for his students, Lachut has reached out to other departments on campus. He works closely with the First Year Experience programs, learning communities, and the advisory centers on campus. Lachut also serves at the advisor for one of the multicultural sororities on campus, MSU, allowing him to help students in different ways.
Advice he would offer college students would be get to get involved by “finding your connection” to the University, becoming fully invested in the college experience, and thus building an affinity for the school, just like Lachut.