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SUNY Potsdam TRIO Program Receives Renewed Funding to Fight For Student Success

August 14, 2020

Funding Increases 3.5 Percent For TRIO Program to Benefit Low-Income, First-Generation, and Disabled Students

Macy Fraser '20, left, tutors Zau Nhkum '21 through the TRIO program.

SUNY Potsdam has learned that an empowering program designed to level the playing field for students has received renewed federal funding as it approaches its 40th birthday.

With tools that include peer tutoring, support in developing study and time management skills, financial literacy and other help navigating the college experience, TRIO’s goal is to increase retention and graduation rates and help students maintain good academic standing.

TRIO funding has been renewed for multiple North Country institutes of higher education, including SUNY Canton, Clarkson University and Jefferson Community College. Potsdam has been funded at $332,515 annually to serve 206 students each year through 2025 — an increase of 3.5 percent in funding over last year. Among North Country colleges, SUNY Potsdam’s program is second in size only to SUNY Plattsburgh, and ranks 10th statewide.

Potsdam’s program continues to rank in the top 20 in the nation based upon performance measures that include graduation rate, retention rate, good academic standing, and cost-effectiveness.

“I’m so pleased to learn of the renewal of our TRIO funding,” said SUNY Potsdam President Dr. Kristin G. Esterberg. “This is such critical support for our low-income, first-generation and disabled students, and I’m glad to know that we are still in the top 20 in the nation for our performance.”

TRIO empowers students to maximize the benefits of their college education, positioning them to graduate within four years and leave the university with skills and knowledge for continued success in the work environment or graduate school studies. The program is funded at a total of $1,662,575 for the project’s lifetime.

“This is especially wonderful news as we will be celebrating the 40th anniversary of the program at SUNY Potsdam on September 1,” said TRIO director Mark Millward, a Potsdam alumnus. “We look forward to continuing to support our diverse student body.”

About SUNY Potsdam:
Founded in 1816, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America’s first 50 colleges—and the oldest institution within SUNY. Now in its third century, SUNY Potsdam is distinguished by a legacy of pioneering programs and educational excellence. The College currently enrolls approximately 3,600 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its challenging liberal arts and sciences core, distinction in teacher training and culture of creativity. To learn more, visit

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