Lake Superior College has hired Stephan Witherspoon as a TRiO Educational Opportunity Center (EOC) Temporary Advisor. His office is located on the Lake Superior College campus in Duluth. His responsibilities will include recruiting students to participate in the EOC program with the goal of successful college graduation.
EOC provides perspective students with the support to enter or reenter higher education through services such as financial aid counseling and helping with the admissions process. Witherspoon will work closely with community resources to both recruit and support students in their academic careers.
Witherspoon has a history of community service and activism. He is the president of the NAACP Duluth Chapter, Co-Chair of Clayton, Jackson, McGhee Memorial Board, and on various other boards and commissions throughout the Twin Ports. He has a B.A.in organizational behavior, an A.A.S. degree in human services, specializing in chemical dependency, and is currently working on his master’s degree in project management at the College of St. Scholastica.
Witherspoon has worked in the criminal justice system, treatment centers, health care facilities, schools, and a variety of other settings. He facilitates groups for homeless youth at Life House and works with men and women in transition after incarceration. He is also a mentor to many youth, helping them to find work, housing, and pathways into higher education.
The Educational Opportunity Center provides community members who qualify in St. Louis, Douglas and Carleton Counties free access to services designed to help them reach a better life through college training and education. The EOC program is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary Education Programs-TRiO.
Participants will be connected to tutors, mentors and counselors for guidance on admission, financial aid and postsecondary course selection. For those who may not have finished high school, help will be offered on secondary school re-entry or high school equivalency exam programs – or other alternative education programs to complete a high school equivalency.
Educational Opportunity Centers also provide services to students traditionally underrepresented in postsecondary education, including students with disabilities, limited English proficiency, and other disadvantaged individuals, such as those who may be homeless, or exiting foster care. The EOCs also serve veterans, military families, formerly incarcerated, and single parent families.
Services provided include: College searches, career choices, financial literacy workshops, understanding financial aid, assistance with FAFSA (Federal and State Financial Aid) applications, loan rehabilitation support, admissions, advising and more.