• Meet our Staff

  • Roseann Rivera, M.S.

    Director of TRIO Programs

    Bio: Born and raised near Oakland, CA—I grew up, privy to the underpinning, and multidimensional systems that marginalize underrepresented communities. As the first in my family to graduate high school, and pursue higher education, I truly understand the limitless opportunities having a college degree can provide. I am committed to diligently examine, diversity, inclusion, student development and systemic change necessary to increase the enrollment rate of underrepresented students in higher education and eradicate the cyclical cycle of poverty that perpetuates community growth. I absolutely love the work of TRIO and its impact on students and their families.

    Education: Master of Science, Educational Leadership & Policy, Specialization in Policy and Government Relations; Bachelor of Science, Political Science

    Arianna Gazca

    Administrative Assistant, TRIO Programs

    Bio: I am an MHCC and TRIO-SSS alum – graduated in 2013. Without this program I would not have been able to succeed academically and further my education. After having completed my Bachelor’s degree, I wanted to give back by helping students in any way I can, in order for them to succeed as well. TRIO works!!

    One interesting thing about me: I am an artist and filmmaker who works around visualizing music. My films have been screened internationally.

    Education: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Animated Arts, Pacific Northwest College of Art; Associate of Science in Art, Mt. Hood Community College


    TRIO Student Support Services

    Nicci Harwood, M.S.

    Program Coordinator, TRIO Student Support Services

    Bio: I was a first-generation college student who grew up in Eugene, Oregon. I know that education is the key to people discovering and achieving their dreams. My professional commitment is to assist students in finding their path and designing a plan that will allow them to reach their goals. I am dedicated to seeing first-generation and non-traditional students earn degrees, transform their lives and change their futures. I believe that diversity, equity, inclusion and acceptance should be part of all aspects in education.

    Fun Fact: I love animals! Some of my favorites are manatees, turtles, llamas and sloths.

    Education: Master of Science, Education: Policy, Foundations and Administration, Portland State University and Bachelor of Arts, Sociology, Portland State University

    Summer Baber, M.S.

    Academic Adviser, TRIO Student Support Services

    Bio: I began my higher education journey at a community college where I received the support needed to become a successful student. After many unexpected twists and turns, I transferred to Portland State University where I earned a bachelor’s degree in Health Education and a master’s degree in Educational Leadership and Policy. As an Academic Adviser, I draw on my experiences as a first-generation college student, as well as my work in education to support and empower students in achieving their goals.

    One interesting thing about me: Many years ago, my husband and I ran the Portland Marathon. One marathon was enough for us, so we switched to running the Portland Shamrock Run every year. My family has done the race a dozen times and counting!

    Education: Master of Science, Educational Leadership and Policy, Portland State University

    Jonathan Straus, M.S.

    Academic Adviser/Learning Specialist, TRIO Student Support Services

    Bio: A life-long student (and two-time winner of the “space cadet” award in high school), I love learning about different people and exploring new places. I was born in the midwest (among starving artists in St. Louis), but have called five other places home (including Singapore) before driving out on a whim to Portland in 2009. Having struggled with focus early in my own educational journey, I enjoy helping fellow “late bloomers” rediscover their passion for learning in college and those elusive “aha!” moments when they solve a challenging math problem! While math and statistics tutoring are my main forte, I’ll happily help you spruce up your papers (whether it’s for writing or another subject) and can also offer perspective on the different sciences (especially if you’re trying to figure out the best ones to take for your degree requirements!). When I’m not geeking out on academics, I’m probably playing board games, tinkering with my bike/computer programs, reading bad fan-fiction, or hanging out with my labradoodle.

    One interesting thing about me: I’m a “super-taster”, which makes me hyper-sensitive to certain flavors. This occasionally complicates my otherwise great life in Portland as I find the bitterness in raw kale, black coffee (or any beverages with “IPA” in the name) absolutely revolting, but it’s made me a more creative cook!

    Education: Master of Science in Systems Science, Portland State University; Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, Skidmore College.