Persist, Succeed, and Graduate!

TRiO Student Support Services offer a holistic approach to student development through Academic Coach Advocacy, facilitated workshops, educational method development, and student activities.

With TRiO Student Support Services

The mission of TRiO-SSS is to increase the knowledge, retention, and graduation rates of low-income, first-generation, and students with disabilities, and facilitate their transition from one level of post-secondary education to the next.

We focus on YOUR idea of success! 

Through a three-tiered approach to student excellence, the Northwest Indian College TRiO-SSS program seeks to improve student retention, success, and graduation through holistic advising, academic success training, and writing mentorship. With service through the NWIC extended campuses, we work with students, staff, faculty – and most importantly with the community – to identify learning strategies based on place and culture, while also serving to prepare students to identify their own version of success.

TRiO Student Support Services

…is committed to providing the tools necessary to help students reach their academic and career goals.

TRiO Eligibility Criteria

  1. US Citizen
  2. Have an Academic Need
  3. Must be low-income, first generation and/or have a documented disability. 

Under the Department of Education for TRiO-SSS the institution decides what the definition of Academic Need includes. At Northwest Indian College Academic Need may include the following:

  1. Low High School Grades
  2. Low Admission Test Scores
  3. Academic Proficient Tests
  4. Low College Grades
  5. High School Equivalency
  6. Failing Grades
  7. Out of the academic pipeline for 5 or more years
  8. Limited English Proficiency
  9. Lack of educational and/or career goals
  10. Need for academic support to raise grade(s) in required course(s)/academic major

Contact Information

TRiO Student Support Service
Program Director

Joan Banel

(360) 392-4331        cell: (360) 224-3255

TRiO Offered Services


  • Educational Planning & Navigation
  • Learning Strategies & Study Skills Workshops
  • Connection to Tutoring & Test Preparation Services
  • Emerging Native Scholars Program
  • Late-Night Study Sessions and Materials (Computers, Laptops, Calculators, & Books*)
  • Academic Intervention & Advocacy
  • Research Methods Training


  • CV/Resume Writing Assistance
  • Motivational Interviewing
  • Career Guidance, Mentoring, and Testing
  • Occupational Development
  • Graduate School Preparation
  • Professional Coaching
  • Job-Search Assistance
  • Career Services



  • Time Management Skills Workshop
  • Personal Image Development
  • Social Media Suite
  • Prioritizing Personal Responsibilities
  • Identifying Individual Strengths
  • Internship & Work-Study Selection Assistance
  • Connection to Local Resources (Healthcare, Childcare, Disabilities Support Services, etc.)


  • Financial Literacy Training
  • Budgeting Workshops
  • Scholarship Search & Application Development
  • Assistance with Applying for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Scholarship Application & Grant Writing Workshops
  • State & Federal Resource Navigation (SNAP, TANF, BFET, etc.)
  • Financial Planning Assistance
  • FAFSA Quick Checklist
Joan Banel
NWIC TRIO SSS Program Director

Joan Banel started with the NWIC TRIO Program in November 2015 as an Academic Support Coach Advocate. With over 25 years of experience in academics ranging from Preschool to Post-Secondary, Joan has developed skills and insights to provide essential student support services. This is Joan’s tenth year working for Northwest Indian College. She earned her bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Washington and her Master of Education degree from Western Washington University. Joan’s experience includes working as an employment specialist, a program coordinator for families experiencing homelessness, and as an educational advocate for youth in foster care. Her favorite motto is Keep Moving Forward. She loves to ski, garden, and spend time outdoors.

Jory Mickelson
Writing Mentor

Jory Mickelson is a TRiO Writing Mentor/Advocate. He is new to the NWIC campus and excited to be here. He was born and raised in Western Montana and relocated to Bellingham, WA in 2002. He graduated with a degree in English from WWU in 2009 and has a Master’s Degree in English from the University of Idaho in 2013.

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