Meet Our Family

Desarae Nelson

Program Director | dxnelson1@ualr.edu | (501) 569-3052

Desarae Nelson

Desarae Nelson

Education:  Doctorate of Higher Education Administration (in progress) from UA Little Rock; Master of Science in Sports Administration from Henderson State University; Bachelor of Science in Biology from Ouachita Baptist University

Short Bio:  Born and raised in Arkadelphia, AR, I come from a family of TRIO professionals. I love fishing and spending time with friends and family. Education is my passion. I love helping people expand their educational horizons because education, once achieved, can never be taken away. “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”-Nelson Mandela

What do you love about TRIO:  I love that TRIO provides nontraditional and underrepresented students opportunities to be successful in post-secondary education. There are so many times when students may consider giving up on their hopes and dreams because life just seems to knock them down. Thankfully, TRIO is always there to encourage them and support them along their journey so that they can continue to move forward one step at a time.

Why should Students Join SSS:  Students should join SSS because there are so many ways that SSS can assist them. Students don’t always consider what needs they have outside of everyday academic needs. While SSS provides assistance with academic needs, SSS also provides networking opportunities and relationships that will last well beyond the student’s time here at UA Little Rock. TRIO SSS is a nurturing, family atmosphere. Come join our TRIO family because TRIO works!

 

Sharina Miller 

Advisor for student’s last name L-Z | sxjones3@ualr.edu | (501) 569-8752

Sharina Miller

Sharina Miller

Education:  Master of Arts in Counseling with emphasis in Rehabilitation Counseling; Bachelor of Science in Biology

Short Bio:  I am a TRiO Alumni (Upward Bound and Student Support Services Program).  I have a lot of TRiO experience as a student and as a professional. I am very passionate about education. I believe any student can be successful, but he or she must be focused, dedicated and utilize the resources available to him or her. I love spending time with family and friends.

What do you love about TRIO:  I love that TRIO offers what was given to me and now I have the opportunity to guide, mentor and pay it forward.  I love the supportive and team-minded staff that makes sure each student’s needs are met.  I love being able to assist students in achieving their goals and preparing for their future endeavors.

Why should Students Join SSS:  Students should join SSS to receive the necessary encouragement from an SSS advisor who will help guide them to accomplish their educational goals.  A student in our program will be able to participate in Grant Aid scholarship, Textbook Loan Program, cultural events, and specific topic workshops, just to name a few resources SSS provides.  Free individualized tutoring opportunities are also available.  Are you planning on Graduate School? Another resource SSS offers is the opportunity to participate in graduate school trips; which is another rewarding experience SSS provides toward ensuring that students are successful and graduate.

 

Ulonda Frazier 

Advisor for student’s last name A-K | udfrazier@ualr.edu | (501) 569-8746

Ulonda Frazier

Ulonda Frazier

Education:  Master of Science in Adult Education with emphasis in Workforce Development Education from University of Arkansas at Fayetteville; Bachelor of Science in Human Resource Development from University of Arkansas at Fayetteville; Associate of Applied Science in Accounting

Short Bio:  Born and raised in beautiful Hot Springs, AR, where I’ve worked in higher education since 2002. I serve as a mentor in my community and have a deep passion for education and helping students fulfill their educational goals. I love traveling, entertaining, and spending time with my family and friends.

What do you love about TRIO:  What is there not to love about TRIO?! TRIO offers awesome resources for the students, that include academic tutoring, career advising, and cultural events. The staff work together to ensure the students have everything they need to thrive.

Why should Students Join SSS:  Students should join SSS to get that extra push or motivation they may need to successfully complete their program of study. SSS provides a number of tools and resources, that gives the student a greater advantage to be successful and obtain their undergraduate degree.
“You may encounter many defeats but you must not be defeated.” – Dr. Maya Angelou

 

Teresa Jordan

Tutoring Coordinator | tljordan@ualr.edu | (501) 569-8749

Education: MEd in Adult Education; MS in Rehabilitation: Deafness; AA and BA in Interpretation: ASL/English

Teresa Jordan

Teresa Jordan

Short Bio:  Motivator.  Educator.  Warm fuzzy maker.  Life-long learner.  Person of deep faith.  Educating and supporting students at UA Little Rock for more than 17 years, learning daily all-the-while.

What do you love about TRIO:  Working with students from a variety of backgrounds and experiences is both informative and encouraging.  Every day is a learning experience, not only for our students, but for us, as staff members.

Why should Students Join SSS:  Academic progress is defined, encouraged, demonstrated, and expected from SSS students by the SSS staff members; and the students do, indeed, happily progress and successfully graduate at a higher rate than the university-at-large student body!

Jacqueline Durr

Academic Coach/Administrative Assistant| jgdurr@ualr.edu | (501) 683-7481

Jacqueline Durr

Jacqueline Durr

Education:  M.S. Higher Education | Student Affairs, UA Little Rock; B.A. Psychology, UA Little Rock; B.A. Spanish, UA Little Rock; AA General Studies, NPC-Hot Springs, AR.

Short Bio:  Purpose driven, Nurturer, Educator.  I am a non-traditional, first-generational student who began at UA Little Rock in the fall of 2013 commuting from Hot Springs to finish a BA in Psychology and Spanish. Nothing is impossible with hard work and commitment. TRIO made the difference.

What do you love about TRIO:  The caring staff, the resources, but mostly seeing the results TRIO makes in the lives of our students. TRIO Works!

Why should Students Join SSS:  If you want to accomplish your academic goals with the help of an amazing staff and the resources SSS provides, combined with your hard work and determination, then Student Support Services is your bridge to success.

 

Marty Mayfield

Project Coordinator | mnmayfield@ualr.edu | (501) 682-5632

Marty Mayfield

Marty Mayfield

Education:  B.A. in Management Information Systems, UA Little Rock; M.A Human Resources Management, Webster University (In Progress)

Short Bio:  I have over 14 years of professional higher education experience. I’m from Little Rock, Arkansas and was the first in my family to graduate from a 4-year institution. I understand and can relate to first-generation college students. Family time is my hobby!

What do you love about TRIO:  What I love about TRIO is how everyone works together to ensure that our students are informed about the different activities happening across campus.  The TRIO program also visits other universities to prepare our students for Graduate School opportunities on their academic journey past an undergraduate degree.

Why should Students Join SSS: Students should join TRIO because we can relate to them.

 

Kristina Yarberry

Graduate Assistant | kmyarberry@ualr.edu | (501) 907-5822

Kristina Yarberry

Kristina Yarberry

Education:   B.A. English-Creative Writing, UA Little Rock; M.A. Professional and Technical Writing (in progress), UA Little Rock

Short Bio:   Writer, artist, gamer, nerd. I love to learn and help others learn, and that’s why I’m here! Education is so valuable, and it brings me joy to assist others in their progress toward it.

What do you love about TRIO:  As a former student in the TRIO program, I always appreciated the kindness and approachability of the staff. As a Graduate Assistant to the program, I still get to see those same characteristics in action every day, and now, I have the opportunity to share them with the students myself. It creates such a positive atmosphere, and I think that is an enormous part of what makes TRIO special.

Why should Students Join SSS:  Students should join SSS because it offers resources that might be otherwise inaccessible and that can truly aid them in reaching their educational and professional goals. SSS also helps students make connections that can lead to excellent career opportunities. We care deeply for the students that we serve, and our mission every day is to help them succeed in every way that we can.

 

Gary Morris

Graduate Assistant | grmorris@ualr.edu | (501) 907-5824

Gary Morris

Gary Morris

Education:   B.S. Ecology, UA Little Rock;  M.S. Biology (in progress), UA Little Rock

Short Bio:    I was born and raised in rural Arkansas and graduated high school in 2015. From there, I attended The University of Arkansas Community College in Batesville, it was here I got my start in tutoring working as a lab tutor on a work-study position. After a year at UACCB, I transferred to UA Little Rock in the fall of 2016. I worked as a TRIO tutor for the 3 years I was an undergraduate, along side working on several research projects in the biology department. After graduating in the spring of 2019, I returned to UA Little Rock  as a prospective graduate student!

What do you love about TRIO: The best thing about TRIO, in my opinion, is it’s uniquely diverse group of students and staff. In many departments, students generally interact with like minded individuals. TRIO is one of the best “melting pot” departments at UA Little Rock, with students from a huge variety of disciplines, backgrounds, and even countries.

Why should Students Join SSS: I encourage students to join SSS in order to better their academic success and build their self confidence. Not only does SSS provide academic support, but it provides many crucial functions to students who may not be able to access them else where.

 

 

Debbie Rogers

SASSEE Coordinator | Master Tutor | dsrogers@ualr.edu  | (501) 907-5823

Debbie Rogers

Debbie Rogers

Education:   MEd Adult Education, UA Little Rock; BA Liberal Arts (Philosophy, Sociology, English, Business) UA Little Rock; AA General Studies, UA Little Rock

Short Bio:  I have attended UA Little Rock almost my entire life, beginning with its predecessor, LRU (Little Rock University) in the mid-1960’s. I worked for 25 years to earn my undergraduate degree, all the while working 40-60 hours/week in the corporate world from which I retired three times. Perseverance is a trait I learned from my father – never give up, keep trying. I started teaching graduate courses at UA Little Rock in 1995 as an adjunct and have since taught in different disciplines, but most recently for the Rhetoric and Writing Department. I have had the pleasure of serving as a tutor for Student Support Services these past few years and recently finalized SASSEE, a special training curriculum for students new to SSS or those wanting to raise their GPA. I view each student as “fearfully and wonderfully made,” and it is to this end my passion has been to help unlock the learning and understanding process for the student.

What do you love about TRIO:  I love that such a program is available to lend a helping hand and encourages students in their academic career. I like how they develop leadership qualities in the student base, and I appreciate the sincere respect each student in the program receives.

Why should Students Join SSS:  Students should join SSS to stay on track with their academic career, to take advantage of the tutoring help, to be included in various educational seminars, to be exposed to Graduate School, for networking, to learn how to navigate the best outcome of their UA Little Rock experience, for motivation and assistance in various ancillary disciplines (financial help, campus resources, academic advising, etc.), to utilize the services of a personal academic coach to guide them through the college and learning maze, and because adherence to the structure of the SSS program almost always ensures a successful college experience.