About Us

Student Success and First Generation Initiative Center

The Student Success and First Generation Initiative Center provides academic support services, resources, and peer leadership opportunities for students.


Our staff encourages, mentors, and guides students in their academic and personal development, including connecting students to appropriate resources on campus.


We are here to help you succeed!

Welcome! The Student Success and First Generation Initiative Center is located in the basement of Griffin Hall (GR70). The Center consists of Learning Services, Access Services, First Generation Initiative/Countdown to College, Advising, and New Student Experience. We are here to help you during your time at Saint Mary’s.

Our Mission

To help support students with their academic, social, personal, and professional development.


Student success is a holistic, individual journey towards personal growth and aspirations, requiring self-awareness, perseverance, and goal articulation. It leads to character development, academic, social, and emotional well-being, achieved through a growth mindset, collaboration, and positive societal contributions.



Joe Justman, 70A
Coordinator of Learning Services

Kaitlyn Taylor, 70B
Access Services Specialist

Jennifer Hanifl, 70C
Director of First Generation Initiative (FGI)

Djeneba Camara Demy, 70H
Coordinator of Countdown to College (C2C)

Jenny Koverman, 70J
Director of Access Services

Sam Borawski, 70K
Director of Advising

Tricia Dobrient, 70L
Senior Director of Student Success

Griffin 70
700 Terrace Heights
Winona, MN 55987

Phone: 507-457-6994
Email: studentsuccess@smumn.edu

Monday - Friday
8 a.m. - 5 p.m.