Sna Diego State University

Student Disability Services

Student Support Services for Students with Disabilities

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1. The Three Parts of TRiO

2. How Do You Deal with Stress?

3. Meet Aracely: TRiO Alumnus

4. Take the TRiO Staff Quiz

5. Being Difference Makes a Difference

6. Scholarships

7. Newsletter Archive





The three parts of TRiO:

Students always ask, “What does TRiO stand for?”  Well, it’s actually not an acronym.  It refers to the group of government programs started back in the 1960s, which included Upward Bound, Talent Search, and Student Support Services (our program is part of SSS ).   However, we can also see TRiO as the three main parts of our program:


Yellow highligher atop text bookAcademic Support:

We can help you with writing, study skills, test-taking strategies and more!  We have a team of well qualified tutors to help you navigate through the challenging writing curriculum here at SDSU.  



Man standing on multi-pointed arrow, scratching his head.


Are you confused about which classes you need for your degree?  Do you need help with a late drop?  Teresa Spoulos is our Academic Advisor.  She would be happy to meet with you to discuss your academic issues.  You’ll be back on the right track soon!



Piggy bank overflowing with moneyFinancial Literacy:

Is your college education breaking the bank?  Come on in to see how you can start saving money today.  We’ll show you how to create a budget and stick to it while minimizing your debt and maximizing your savings. 






How do you deal with stress?


Everyone deals with it at some point, and everyone deals with it differently.  However, there are times when your tried and true methods may just not work as well.  Here are some tips to try next time you’re feeling overwhelmed:

Man in suit playing electric guitar

Music—Whether you play an instrument or just like listening, music can be a great way to release some stress.  Maybe cranking up some punk rock helps you get out some aggression or strumming your guitar helps  you relax.  Music has the amazing ability to emulate and transform emotions—

even if you play the French horn!



Cat peering through fish bowl at a goldfish

Pets—Whether you’re cuddling with your cat or playing catch with your dog, chances are you will feel more at ease.  Pets have been scientifically proven to help relieve stress and keep your mind and body healthy.  Yes, even a goldfish!


Vegetables and shrimp in a stir fry wokCooking—You don’t have to be a professional chef to enjoy making a meal.   Invite some friends over to help out.  You’ll have a good time and save money, too.   The smells and tastes will help soothe your nerves, and chopping can be therapeutic—just be careful with that cleaver! 


The pages of an ebook open on a smart phone

Reading—Perhaps no single activity helps one mentally escape from daily stress as effectively as curling up with the right book. Literary tastes are as variant as human personalities, but sharing the adventures and challenges of a character with whom you identify can help one unwind, reflect on personal life circumstances, and often provides exposure to new ideas, cultures, and vocabulary. Even better, e-books fit conveniently onto that smart phone that you already carry with you everywhere.



Meet Aracely: TRiO Alumnus


You’ve no doubt already met her; she greets you with a smile as you enter the HTC.  Besides being our friendly front desk ambassador, Aracely is an alumnus of our program and a graduate student here at SDSU in the Rehabilitation Counseling program. Aracely smiling broadly

“What I found valuable about being in TRiO is the staff was always encouraging me to do my best. The support I received gave me a home on campus which helped me academically. It was a rough transition being a transfer student, but TRiO helped me get acclimated to the campus.”  


Aracely graduated in 2010 with a degree in Social  Work.  She knew the next step was a Master’s degree but was unsure which program would be the best fit for her. “In my heart, having a disability and knowing the difficulty of college, I knew I wanted to help student with disabilities. It was then that I knew that Rehab Counseling was the perfect fit, and SDSU has the top program in California.  The staff at TRiO prepared me for the interview and helped me with my resume. I believe TRiO paved the way for me to help people with disabilities, and that is why I want to be a Rehab Counselor: to give back.”


Aracely has completed the first year of her program and already has a good idea of her future career goals.  “I want to work at a community college with students who have disabilities. I love working in the transition age because it is so critical to get students the resources they need.”  In the shorter term, she’ll be working hard here at the HTC while finishing school.  She is also looking forward to January of 2013:

“With the incentive of the TRiO staff living vicariously through me, I am going to Ireland in 2013!”  While she may not meet Bono, she might end up kissing the Blarney Stone.  We know she’ll have a great time; we just hope she doesn’t forget to come back!





Take the TRiO staff quiz!


1. Which staff member did not spend his/her childhood in California?Cute black and white dog with big ears

A. Teresa  B.  Steve 
C.  Julie   D.  Johnny


2. Which  staff member is not a dog parent?

 A. Teresa  B. Steve 
C. Julie  D.  Johnny


3. Aracely is in which Master’s program?

A.  Gerontology  B.  Rehab Counseling 
C.  Paleontology  D.  Astrology


4. True or False:  Teresa likes to perform as a circus clown on the weekends.

5. True or False:  Johnny is know for his Flamin’ Hot Chicken Wings.


6. True or False:  Aracely was child actor who appeared in  commercials. 

7. True or False:   Steve plays the mandolin.

8. Name one country Teresa has NOT visited: 

9. In what foreign country did Julie teach? 

10. In what grungy city did Steve live in the early 90’s?

11. What service does the TRiO program NOT provide?

A. Financial counseling B. Help with resumes
C. Proofreading  D.  WPA preparation

12. Teresa’s undergraduate degree is in which field?

A. Psychology  B.  Accounting 
C.  Speech Communication  D.  Agriculture

13. Which has Johnny completed? 

A.  PhD.  B.  Marathon 

C.  Needlepoint of Einstsein   D.  Toothpick model of the Taj Mahal

14. True or False:  Motivational speaker Tony Robbins tried to get Julie to walk on coals.

  15.True or False:  This quiz is an accurate gauge of your true




Being different makes a difference.

Imagine if everyone were the same.  Pretty boring, huh?  Yet, there are still pressures that push us towards conformity and consensus.  There are times when we need a reminder that breaking free and having a divergent opinion are not only okay but necessary.  Diversity plays an important role in this process—race, ethnicity, gender, disability.   Different ideas come from different people.  Being different makes a difference.


Albert Eintein

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.”

—Albert Einstein



Young Martin Luther King, Jr. being arrested

“The time is always right to do what is right.”   

—Martin Luther King Jr.




Helen Keller petting a dog“The most pathetic person in the world is someone who has sight but no vision.”

—Helen Keller








Scholarships and you: Financing your education

Scholarships can help finance a college education. Students are always looking for money to help pay for books, fees, and school supplies. Yet, they often neglect to consider scholarships as part of their ovearall financial package; a common assumption exists that scholarships are only merit based. While it is true that some scholarships are based on a high grade point average, many are not. Quite a few scholarships are based on more diverse factors, including area of study, financial need, community service, and study abroad.

hand holding a bag of cashHere at SDSU, the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships offers hundreds of scholarships. Funding for scholarships comes from private donors, professional associations, SDSU alumni, and various community groups.  To learn more about scholarship criteria and how to search and apply for them, please visit the scholarship web page at

Through the TRiO Project, Teresa can teach you how to navigate the scholarship web site and talk to you about the application process. Most scholarship applications require a personal statement and the TRiO staff can guide you in writing a clear, concise statement. If you would like help in exploring scholarships, please contact Teresa at or 619-594-4401.



Archived Newsletters

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Spring 2012

Fall 2011

Spring 2011

Fall 2010

Spring 2010

Fall 2009

Spring 2009

Fall 2008