Helping students to “be successful and influential graduates through planned and strengthened extracurricular, co-curricular and career development activities”, is one of the strategic objectives articulated in the SMU Strategic Plan.

The Student Support Services Office (SSSO) works in collaboration with all academic units and offices to realize the vision and mission of the University. To ensure the provision of more focused and quality support services to students, the Student Support Services Office has been put in place at both the Undergraduate and Graduate campuses. Each office is staffed with qualified professionals and has been organized based on the peculiar needs and demands of the students of the respective campuses.

The SSSO at the Undergraduate Campus undertakes its activities through the Guidance and Counseling Unit, Student Wellness Unit, and the Student Union. The SSSO organizes and facilitates different co-curricular and extra-curricular activities at the Undergraduate Campus. Among the activities the office runs are, Thursday Talk Show and different club initiatives, which create vibrant student engagement, which, among others, include presenting and discussing literary works, providing voluntary services, exercising charity endeavors, etc. The Charity Club makes regular and periodic visits to humanitarian organizations, hospitals and other care centers; makes donations in kind and money; and does some voluntary activities. In addition, the Club in collaboration with the SSSO, mobilizes the University community to donate blood in the biannual blood donation events held at the Undergraduate Campus. Moreover, the SSSO holds different events that promote the 21st century skills students should develop.


The Student Support Services Office (SSSO) works in collaboration with all departments and offices of St. Mary’s University (SMU) to support the vision and mission of the University. SSSO is responsible for overseeing the operations of all student support units: Guidance and Counseling, Student Wellness and Health Services, Student Development and Success Unit, Students’ Union and most student-related events. It also liaises between students and the administration of the SMU.

The ultimate goals of SSSO are to:

  • inspire a vibrant campus life and engage the student body;
  • maintain and exchange good practices;
  • create a sense of purpose;
  • enhance services that meet the needs of students; 
  • provide support to students and enable them be productive and creative citizens;
  • encourage students to be engaged in various extra-curricular activities, so that they develop healthy personality and avoid involving in harmful activities;
  • encourage students to participate in community services;
  • encourage students to search for and use their potential;
  • enhance the culture of team work among students; and
  • Assist students to develop skills to access resources and services at SMU which are helpful in transition to the University life.

The duties and responsibilities of SSSO are to:

  • advocate for students;
  • organize orientation for new students;
  • organize students’ day (welcome events);
  • organize farewell events;
  • provide students’ general information related to rules, regulations, procedures etc. of SMU in collaboration with other offices of SMU to enhance services that meet the needs of students;
  • take part during orientation;
  • facilitate the Thursday Talk Show;
  • organize the Question and Answer Competition;
  • give support to students that live with visible and invisible disabilities;
  • provide tutorials on major and supportive courses, and the English Language;
  • make sure that the classes of students with physical disability are on the lower floors of the buildings when it is aware of it ;
  • in collaboration with the Library and Documentation Office, fetch books to the students with physical disability;
  • support students with invisible disability according to their needs as much as it is possible for SMU;
  • work with the Language Enhancement Resource Centre to help students develop their English language, communication, oral presentation and writing skills; and
  • Hear students’ grievances and appeals, and coordinate meetings to address such issues.


Undergraduate Campus

Phone: +251 11 553 8019


P.O. Box: 1211 /18490

Addis Ababa



The Student Support Services Office (SSSO) at the School of Graduate Studies (SGS) was founded to promote students’ active engagement and involvement in the teaching and learning process, support in building comprehensive student development and leadership opportunities, and strengthen student-centered services, operations, and facilities development. The Office is the point of contact for graduate students, and the right arm for the academic units in facilitation and coordination of diverse academic activities. It is a means of bridging knowledge, skills, and attitudinal and professional self-development.

The Student Support Services Office of SGS has the following tasks. It:

  • provides incessant support at every stage of graduate education, whether personal or academic problems that may deter success in an academic performance;
  • offers intensive academic counseling and training to help students complete their studies successfully;
  • designs guidance and counseling schedules for low achieving students who end up with probation and suspension to improve their academic status;
  • in collaboration with the deans offices, organizes and provides guidance services and orientation to new entrants;
  • hears students’ grievances and appeals and brings the same to Graduate Council (GC) for decision in a timely fashion;
  • organizes make-up exams and re-evaluation for students who miss final exams due to reasons beyond their control and are supported with tangible evidences;
  • conducts elections of class representatives, holds face-to-face meetings with them, and reports the feedback to the top management for remedial actions;
  • conducts customer satisfaction surveys on SGS service delivery (students’ satisfaction, course experience and staff concern);
  • coordinates thesis writing and follows up the progress of graduate students’ thesis work (organizes orientation sessions for Thesis I, develops and disseminates thesis timeline, supports and follows students’ thesis writing, and evaluates the process of thesis writing);
  • familiarizes students with the University’s policies, rules and regulations;
  • follows-up the smooth running of class schedules and examinations;
  • facilitates students’ practical attachment in actual work environment; and
  • Coordinates graduation ceremonies and prepares graduation year book.

The Office closely works with faculty deans, academic staff, students, and the University community at large in the creation of a fully integrated student educational experience.


Main Campus

Tel. +251 11 552 4503 


P.O. Box: 1211/18490,

 Addis Ababa,