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 facing personal difficulties, such as food and housing insecurity, to campus and community resources. We are dedicated to assisting all students, 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, utilities, and prescription fulfillment.
  • We assist with applications for SNAP benefits.
  • We refer 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

Need help? Please contact GSU4U in the Office of the Dean of Students. Your information will be kept private.

Email: GSU4U@govst.edu
Phone: 708.235.2845
Office: C-1310

If this is an emergency, please call the GSU Department of Public Safety at 708.534.4900 or local police at 911.   

* Off-campus organizations and resources listed on this website are provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute or imply an endorsement of the organization by Governors State University. The views and opinions expressed in any referenced document do not necessarily state or reflect those of Governors State University.

  • Need help? Start with a GSU4U Ambassador!


     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 above).

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

    Academic Advising     Lisa Helmlhendrickson@govst.edu
     Kerri O'Sheakoshea@govst.edu
     Chastinee Nelsoncnelson8@govst.edu
     Ivan Sotoisoto@govst.edu
     Stacey Amedeosamedeo@govst.edu
     Sabrina Slocumsslocum@govst.edu
     Rebecca Schreursrschreurs@govst.edu
    Access Services for Students with DisabilitiesAngela Szczepanik-Sanchez     aszczepaniksanchez@govst.edu
    AdmissionsTiffani Robertsontrobertson3@govst.edu
     Collice King      cking@govst.edu
     Craig Berry     cberry@govst.edu
     Karina Hernandez Cazarezkhernandezcazarez@govst.edu
    Auxiliary Services & University HousingMushtaq Choudhary     mchoudhary@govst.edu
     Corinne Martincmartin8@govst.edu
    AdvancementKymbria Youngkyoung6@govst.edu
    College of Arts & SciencesMerri Wilkersonmwilkerson@govst.edu
     George Nkulenugnkulenu@govst.edu
     Novia Pagonenpagone@govst.edu
     Kerri Morriskmorris2@govst.edu
     Ben Almassibalmassi@govst.edu
     Laura Whitelwhite@govst.edu
    College of BusinessTingting Hethe@govst.edu
    College of EducationRaquel Riosrrios@govst.edu
    College of Health & Human ServicesCynthia Carrccarr@govst.edu
     Jolander Jeffriesjjeffries@govst.edu
    Dual Degree Program    Jessica Spechtjspecht@govst.edu
     Sharita Walkerswalker3@govst.edu
    Extended LearningMichelle Sebascomsebasco@govst.edu
    Facilities Development and ManagementDonna Gilldgill3@govst.edu
    Financial AidSylvia Ponce De Leonsponcedeleon@govst.edu
     LaSheena Fullerlfuller@govst.edu
     Pat Rounsavelleprounsavelle@govst.edu
     Sharry Murawskismurawski@govst.edu
     Corey Droletcdrolet@govst.edu
     Barbara Francisquebfrancisque@govst.edu
    Financial ServicesLinda Theres-Jonesltheres-jones@govst.edu
     Jeanna Brown     jbrown24@govst.edu
    Institutional ResearchJessica Haynesjhaynes4@govst.edu
    Office of the Dean of StudentsAurélio Valenteavalente@govst.edu
     Corey Williams          cwilliams43@govst.edu
     Kelly Grab   kgrab@govst.edu
     Lisa Carralcarra@govst.edu
    Office of the ProvostColleen Sextoncsexton@govst.edu
    Public Safety/University PoliceOfficer H. Jason Turnerhturner@govst.edu
    Graduate AdmissionsJason Vignonevignone@govst.edu
    RegistrarKimberly Petersonkpeterson1@govst.edu
     Stephanie Contreras-Juarez     sjuarez@govst.edu


  • Quick Overview of Campus Resources


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


  • Student Emergency Fund



    Student Emergency Fund

    The Student Emergency Fund provides limited emergency financial support to Governors State University students who are unable to meet essential educational expenses due to a temporary or unexpected hardship. Distributed funds depend upon the individual situation of each student and the demonstrated need. Emergency Funds are typically awarded once and do not need to be repaid. The fund is supported entirely by donations. 

    Eligibility Requirements

    • Degree-seeking students who are enrolled in courses during the semester in which the funds are being requested.
    • Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing.
    • Students must provide sufficient documentation of financial hardship.
    • All other financial resources, including student loans, have been exhausted or are insufficient or unavailable.

    Examples of Educational Expenses

    • Tuition and Fees
    • University Housing
    • Meal Plan
    • Textbooks and Course Materials


    To apply, submit the online application and upload available supporting documentation. You will need to log into the application using your GSU username and password.  

    Requests will be reviewed on a first come, first served basis by a committee comprised of representatives from each of the following offices: Institutional Advancement, Financial Aid, Financial Services, Dean of Students. Other offices or departments may be consulted as needed.


    If you have questions or need assistance, please email deanofstudents@govst.edu, call 708.235.7595, or visit the Office of the Dean of Students in C1310, Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.


  • SNAP (Link Card) Applications


    snapNorthern Illinois Food Bank assists with determining eligibility for food assistance and completing LINK card applications for SNAP benefits.

    Please review the eligibility information and be prepared to discuss your job and income. A state photo ID and information about your income is required to complete an application.

    If you need assistance before the next on-campus event, applications can be completed online through the Illinois Department of Human Services.

    Need help? Questions about eligibility for benefits or assistance with completing an application can be directed to the Northern Illinois Food Bank at 844-600-SNAP (7627) or by visiting their website. GSU's designated Northern Illinois Food Bank representative is Jen Williams. Jen can be reached by email at jwilliams@northernilfoodbank.org or by phone (calling and texting) at 224-407-1807.

  • Food Resources


    The GSU Food Pantry, located in A1115 (new location!), is available Monday and Wednesday from 4 - 7 p.m. and Tuesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. or at other times by contacting the Center for Student Engagement and Intercultural Programs in A2100.

    View a list of community-based food pantries and meal services (PDF).


  • Housing & Shelter Resources


    View a list of homeless shelters and housing resources (PDF) in Chicago, the South Suburbs, and Cook County.

    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.


  • Clothing and Home Goods


    The Storefront on Sixty Third offers donated clothing, home furnishings, and decor-related goods from Chicago businesses to more than 55,000 residents in the Chicago Lawn area.

  • 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


     The GSU Counseling and Wellness 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

  • CCAMPIS Grant for Childcare Assistance


    Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) 

    Child care financial assistance for Governors State University student-parents so they can graduate!

     The goal of CCAMPIS is to assist low-income student parents who are eligible to receive a Federal Pell grant with child care expenses at the GSU Family Development Center (FDC) to ensure student parent enrollment, persistence, and graduation. CCAMPIS is a 4-year federal grant awarded to GSU by the U.S. Department of Education. Continued availability of funds is dependent upon the U.S. Department of Education.

    Family Development Center:

    The mission of the FDC is to provide an exceptional educational experience that exemplifies best practices for children, an innovative learning environment for GSU students and creates a network of support for the families we serve, promoting life-long learning. The FDC serves children six weeks to 5 years old.

    Eligibility Requirements:

    Students must be a Pell recipient or be Pell eligible. To determine Pell eligibility, students must apply for financial aid. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid at faid@govst.edu with any questions. 

    Priority funding will be granted to full-time students. This helps to ensure that students complete timely degrees and obtain employment that can support their family.

    Priority funding will be granted to individuals with infants and children in full-time care who qualify for Early Head Start (EHS) and Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP).

    Program Requirements:

    Students must attend an orientation and one parent/child program or activity per semester. Events will be posted on the GSU4U website each semester. Community activities are permitted with prior approval of the Director of Community Standards and Student Advocacy.
    Students must make satisfactory academic progress to receive ongoing funding. 

    Students must complete an annual evaluation of their program, care, and personal experience to receive ongoing funding.

    Student-parents who graduate are required to complete a post-graduation survey on their degree attainment and employment outcomes with CCAMPIS support.

    Program Benefits:

    • Access to free or discounted full-day early childhood education
    • Referrals to community resources and services to support you and your family
    • The Family Development Center (FDC) teaching staff will assist you with monitoring the healthy development of your child as they receive childcare through the FDC
    • Director of Community Standards and Student Advocacy will also offer workshops
    • Family engagement as full partners in the decisions that affect your children

    Participant Requirements:

    • Ensure your child attends programming Monday-Friday for the full day to ensure consistency and program benefits for your child
    • Maintain communication with the Director of Community Standards and Student Advocacy and report any barriers or concerns
    • Work with the Director of Community Standards and Student Advocacy at least once a semester to establish potential goals for the family and/or your child


    To apply, submit the online application and required supporting documentation. If you need assistance, contact the Director of Community Standards and Student Advocacy at gsu4u@govst.edu or 708.235.2845.

  • Childcare or Dependent Care Assistance


    For a student with dependents, an allowance for costs expected to be incurred for dependent care may be included in your cost of attendance. This covers care during periods that include, but are not limited to, class time, study time, field work, internships, and commuting time for the student. If approved, the amount of the allowance will be based on the number and age of such dependents and will not exceed reasonable costs in the community for the kind of care provided.

    Documentation required: Copies of three months of cancelled checks (front and back) and/or money orders made payable to the child care provider. If the student/parent is caring for an elderly relative residing in their home, they must provide: tax return for the elderly person, bills from a longterm care facility, asset information from the elderly person, the parent’s/student’s tax return to see whether the elderly person was claimed as an exemption, and information about the elderly person’s income, such as social security, pensions, and interest/dividend income. 

    Please complete the "Budget Adjustment Form" and submit it with additional documentation to your Financial Aid Advisor. See: https://www.govst.edu/forms-publications/

  • Transportation for Medicaid Participants


    First Transit assists Medicaid Participants who have limited access to non-emergency transportation to and from a Medicaid covered health care service.

    First Transit is the call center that the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) contracted with to provide the review of prior authorizations for most non-emergency transportation. First Transit is NOT a transportation provider, and does not arrange transportation. First Transit does maintain a list of enrolled Medicaid transportation providers for Participants to select from.

    Information on eligibility and scheduling transportation is available on the First Transit Website.

  • Resources for Undocumented Students


    GSU publishes Resources for Undocumented Students including information about the Illinois DREAM Act, GSU admissions, DACA, financial resources, and community agencies.

    Illinois Temporary Driver's License for Undocumented (Non-Visa) Individuals

    Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR) publishes the Undocumented Student's Guide to College which includes information about navigating financial aid, student rights, community resources, and related laws.

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

  • GSU Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act


    Governors State University has many of its programs approved by the Will County Workforce Board for funding by the Work Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act is a federally funded grant program to assist unemployed individuals in entering or returning to the workforce. These programs are certified to provide education and training to adults and dislocated workers who have been awarded vouchers under this act. Although, GSU does not provide vouchers we honor them for our approved programs.

    For more information, please visit: