We are here to help!

GSU4U is an initiative by the Office of the Dean of Students (ODOS) to strengthen support for student success. GSU4U connects students to campus and community resources when they are facing personal difficulties, such as food and housing insecurity. We are dedicated to assisting all students experiencing personal difficulties no matter how serious or small the situation may seem.

What we do:

  • We connect students to community agencies that offer assistance with housing, food, clothing, utility, and prescription fulfillment.
  • We assist with applications for food stamps and medical assistance.
  • We connect students to healthcare and counseling services.
  • We connect students to academic tutoring and planning services.
  • We provide departmental presentations related to helping students and staff identify distressed students.  

What students say:

"GSU4U has been the bridge to help me to succeed here at GSU. The hardship of being a student without a stable place to live is extremely difficult especially when you do not have a family support system. GSU4U has given me access to resources and stability that will help me to succeed in my program and to continue towards graduation. I believe in GSU4U." - Anonymous Student

If you or the student you are assisting has an emergency, please call GSU Public Safety at 708.534.4900 or local police at 911. Please contact the Office of the Dean of Students at 708.235.2845 for all other matters. 

If you need assistance, please contact GSU4U. Your information will be kept private.

Email: GSU4U@govst.edu
Phone: 708.235.2845
Office: C1310


 snapIllinois Hunger Coalition assists with completing LINK card applications for SNAP benefits. Illinois Hunger Coalition will be on-campus several times per semester. Fall 2017 Dates: September 12, October 25

If you need assistance before the next on-campus date, please contact the Illinois Hunger Coalition Hunger Hotline at 800.359.2163 or online at http://www.ilhunger.org

A photo ID (state ID) and information about your income is required to complete an application. 

  • Need help? Start with a GSU4U Ambassador!


    gsu4u ambassadors sticker GSU4U Ambassadors are staff and faculty who are aware of the challenges students may experience around hunger and housing and can help students connect and navigate resources. Ambassadors can be identified by the GSU4U Ambassador sticker (pictured at right).

    Want to become an Ambassador? Workshops occur each semester, contact gsu4u@govst.edu for more information.


    AdmissionsTiffani Robertsontrobertson3@govst.edu
     Mark Crawleymcrawley2@govst.edu
    Center for the Junior YearLakia Colquittlcolquitt2@govst.edu
     Peer Success CoachesOffice: C1321
    College of Arts & SciencesMerri Wilkersonmwilkerson@govst.edu
     George Nkulenugnkulenu@govst.edu
     Novia Pagonenpagone@govst.edu
     Ben Almassibalmassi@govst.edu
    College of Health & Human ServicesCynthia Carrccarr@govst.edu
    Dual Degree Program    Jessica Spechtjspecht@govst.edu
     Student Transition AssistantsOffice: A2122
    Enrollment ManagementRandi Schneiderrschneider@govst.edu
    Financial ServicesLinda Theres-Jonesltheres-jones@govst.edu
    New Student ProgramsRoshaunda Rossrross3@govst.edu
    Office of the Dean of StudentsAurelio Valenteavalente@govst.edu
     Nikki Witt Penwellnwittpenwell@govst.edu
    Office of the ProvostColleen Sextoncsexton@govst.edu
    Public Safety/GSU PoliceOfficer Turnerhturner@govst.edu
    RegistrarJason Vignonevignone@govst.edu
     Kimberly Petersonkpeterson1@govst.edu
    Student LifeSheree Sandersonssanderson@govst.edu
    Undergraduate Academic Advising CenterLisa Helmlhendrickson@govst.edu
    University HousingAshley Stewartastewart6@govst.edu
     Betsy Josephejoseph@govst.edu
     Corinne Martincmartin8@govst.edu
     Mushtaq Choudharymchoudhary@govst.edu


  • Quick Overview of Campus Resources


    Toolkit of GSU Campus Resources includes information about housing support, financial aid, food, storage, shower facilities, books and class materials, Career Closet, and emergency necessities.


  • Food Resources


    Visit the GSU Food Pantry located in the Jaguar Den in A2140.

    View a list of food pantries and meal services here: GSU4U Food Resources

  • Housing & Shelter Resources


    View a list of homeless shelters and housing resources: GSU4U Housing & Shelter Resources

    South Suburban Cook County Call Center assists with housing referrals and can be reached at 877.426.6515 on Monday-Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm. The call center provides two types of referrals: Homelessness Prevention (HP) Referrals (rental assistance, security deposit) & Diversion/Short Term Stabilization (STSS) Referrals (Non-financially based, case management). To qualify for the HP referrals the individual must have a income and proof of their hardship, (i.e. what prevented them from paying last months rent or proof of why they must move and can't pay forward for security deposit). STSS referrals are given to those who do not qualify for HP. However, STSS referrals are limited and it is recommended to call early in the day for assistance.


  • Legal Services


    Illinois Legal Aid Online's mission is to increase access to justice for lower-income and vulnerable Illinois residents. The website includes information on legal issues (laws, filing paperwork), how to find a lawyer, and connections to resources. Information is available regarding the following issues:

    • Family & Safety
    • House & Apartment
    • Money & Debt
    • Health & Benefits
    • Business & Work
    • School and Education
    • Citizens & Immigration
    • Crime & Traffic

    Immigration Legal Services Resource Guide provides a directory of organizations that assist with immigration and naturalization services in Illinois. 

    Cook County Free/Low Cost Legal Services Directory

    Will County Free/Low Cost Legal Services Directory

  • Healthcare Services


    GSU Student Health & Counseling Center offers free medical and counseling services to registered students.

    Aunt Martha's offers care coordination, healthcare services, child welfare, and community wellness resources.
    Location: 19990 Governors Highway, Olympia Fields, IL 60461
    Phone: 708.747.7100

  • GSU presentation featured at NASPA


    GSU has a long history of establishing and presenting best practices, and our faculty and staff have a history of sharing that with the higher ed community. In partnership with Dr. Shaniqua Jones, a proud GSU alumna, and Director of Community Engagement and Diversity Programs at Trinity Christian College, Dr. Aurélio Manuel Valente and Nikki Witt Penwell presented a session entitled "Moving from surviving to thriving: Supporting our students in their time of need." at the NASPA Region IV-E conference in Detroit, Michigan.

    Session description: 58,000 college students reported being homeless on their FAFSA application. In a 2016 study, 48% of responding college students reported food insecurity. These national reports are alarming, but what’s happening on our campuses? This session shares national research on hunger and housing insecurity, showcases best practices in supporting our students, and engages in discussion about what can be done on our campuses.