TRiO/SSS Staff

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TRiO/Student Support Services


Jody Maloney is the director of the TRiO Student Support Services program at Finlandia University.  She completed her Master's degree in Education at St. Mary's University of Minnesota, and did her undergrad studies at Grand Valley State University. In past lives, Jody has worked in Adult Education, AmeriCorps, Retail Management, teaching French, and as the local 4-H instructor, but now, she enjoys her time working with Finlandia students to help them achieve great things while pursuing a Bachelor's Degree.    Jody is the mother of three wild and crazy guys, and "enjoys" filling her spare time with household chores and raising backyard chickens. 

Fun fact about Jody:  She enjoys making Ukranian eggs.


Director/Academic Contact
Nikander 11
487-7346 or ext.  346 


Terri Olsen

Project Coordinator
Nikander 11
487-7296 or ext. 296



Mark Cavis is the TRiO SSS Academic Contact and Career Services Manager at Finlandia University.  Mark is from the Copper country and after completing his AA in Business at Suomi college, he transferred to Northern Michigan University, where  played intramural hockey.  His team, the Copper Country Independents, won the IM Championship in 1974.  These days, Mark enjoys spending time at home with his wife, making homemade wine.  He started this hobby in 2008, and has made over 1,000 bottles.  The reason Mark enjoys his role at TRiO SSS is that he gets to help students realize their potential and wathc them grow in manyy different ways.  "They also teach me things," he adds. 

Fun Facts about Mark:  He has met Gordon Lightfoot and Detroit Red Wings camptain Henrik Zetterberg, AND he can't live without sweets.  Come see Mark any time in Nikander 11, and don't forget the cookies!


Academic Contact/
Career Services Manager
Nikander 11
487-7315 or ext.  315



Jerry Hess is originally from Plymouth, Indiana, but has lived many places around the U.S., settling here in the Upper Peninsula because it had many of the things he can't live with out, like fresh air, clean water, wholesome food and love.

As a Sociology major at Indiana University at South Bend, and Master in Social Work student at Indiana University at Purdue, Jerry spent long hours of studying (reading, writing) to get decent grades on tests, term papers and presentations.  During his college career, internships gave him valuable work experience.  For stress relief, he made the healthy choice and swam laps at the local YMCA and worked out regularly, except on Friday nights, which usually meant going out “dancing and getting wild”, IF he didn’t have any tests or papers due on Monday. 

Jerry is inspired by working with TRiO students because  of the way students realize their talents, grow intellectually and see that they have a future that really matters.

Jerry enjoys the art of Edward Hopper, an American artist, because in his art he conveys a sense of being alone in the moment.

Fun Facts about Jerry and canoeing: "I once won second place in a canoe race with my best friend, on the Yellow River at the Blueberry Festival in my childhood hometown of Plymouth, Indiana.  On occasion I can be a 'risk taker'.  A few years back a friend and I canoed from Lac La Belle thru the channel out to Manitou Island.  We had a great time paddling over, camping on the island and coming back to the mainland.  Upon our return we were told by others that it wasn’t a very safe thing to do in a canoe, due to the unpredictability of the weather."


Academic Contact/
Personal Counselor
Nikander 11
487-7353 or ext. 353


Don Wells
SSS Lead Professional Tutor
Nikander 10, TLC
487-7255 or ext. 255

Nikander 10, TLC
487-7255 or
ext. 255