Student Support Services (SSS) is for first generation, income-eligible, and/or disabled students enrolled at the University of Pittsburgh. Funded by the U.S. Department of Education, SSS has been at the University of Pittsburgh since 1972. SSS is a program for all undergraduate students, regardless of school or major. Students who may qualify for SSS are either first-generation (defined as parents or guardians have not graduated from a four-year institution), meet the economic guidelines set by the federal government, or are registered with the University’s Disability Resources and Services office.

“My relationship with my SSS Advisor is better than I could have imagined before joining SSS. My advisor provides me with encouragement, advice, resources, positivity, and support. It is a wonderful feeling to have someone who is so wholeheartedly on your side and who gives you their full attention when you need someone to talk to.”

–Herlide Joseph (Psychology), pictured above at right with her SSS advisor, Sheba Gittens 

Individual Meetings

All SSS students are assigned an academic advisor in SSS. In addition to coursework, there is a whole life outside of the classroom. Our staff is available to help students meet their academic goals, as well as to help them work through any personal concerns and challenges. SSS works closely with other University offices and programs to provide students with referrals to a wide range of campus resources, including the Office of Career Development and Placement Assistance, University Wellness Center, Study Abroad Office, University Honors College, and more than 300 student organizations.

Cultural and Social Events

SSS coordinates FREE local cultural events that include live theater, museums, a tour of the city, and hands-on activities, including a visit to the Pittsburgh Glass Center. In addition, SSS offers FREE social events such as game and movie nights, Kennywood Fright Night, and outdoor activities that provide students with an opportunity to relax with other SSS students, SSS Peer Mentors, and SSS staff, while connecting with the University and surrounding community.

Peer Mentoring, Scholars Network and Academic Support

  • SSS Peer Mentors assist peers in adjusting socially and academically to the University. They attend SSS events and serve as teaching assistants in the Right Start to College courses. Peer Mentors share their experiences in areas ranging from the best places to eat to tips on how to study for exams and how to network with professors.
  • The SSS Scholars Network is comprised of SSS upperclassmen and alumni who are committed to sharing resources and ideas based on major/career interests, internship/research experiences, and scholarship opportunities.
  • In conjunction with the Academic Resource Center, SSS provides individual and group tutoring on a wide range of subjects from statistics to organic chemistry.


SSS offers academic workshops on topics such as time management, test taking, finals preparation, career planning, graduate/professional school application process, networking, financial management, and coping with stress, to name a few.

The Right Start to College Courses (ARTSC 0111, 0112, 0113)

SSS Right Start to College courses provide tools to SSS students through these 1-credit experiences. Topics include taking effective notes for college courses, managing test anxiety, working with professors, exploring options for majors, graduate school preparation, job/internship search skills, resume writing, interview skills, and cover letters.

Contact Us

For more information, contact Student Support Services at 412-624-6588.