By: Rosita Lewis
Deborah Mack was a 32 year employee of St. Louis Community College Florissant Valley; working with TRIO was her last employment experience. The TRIO Student Support Services Program (SSS) was initially funded for this campus in 2000 - 2001. She was hired as an advisor. She served in that capacity until her recent sudden transition on February 8, 2014.
The SSS Program is funded by the United States Department of Education, Student Services Division and charged to serve participants enrolled in higher education and assist them in persistence and completion. Because STLCC is a 2-year institution, the additional objective is that students transfer to a 4-year institution. Our TRIO program vision is that these participants be served from a holistic approach. This means supporting student awareness and use of the many campus helps that cause student persistence in addition to TRIO’s monitoring student progress academically and helping to develop financial responsibility.
Deborah Mack spent many hours expending her creativity and talents making sure her caseload of students knew and understood their curriculums, met with their instructors and received appropriate academic help. She not only referred students to various campus and community programs for assistance, she kept flyers, brochures and maintained contacts with collaborative partners to aid students in need. Many students knew if they were hungry, Ms. Mack had peanut butter and crackers or ramen noodles in her desk! She hosted international students attending this college that reflected her support of education. These acts of kindness revealed the love she had for students and her work.
Deborah Mack was an educator, colleague, life-long learner, coach and friend to many on this campus. She has surely left big shoes for others to follow and definitely is missed.