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Educational Support Services

Purpose of The Programs

The primary purpose of TRIO programs is to prepare low-income/potential first-generation college students for successful entry into, retention in, and completion of postsecondary education.  The Ronald E. McNair program provides support to those students who are pursuing graduate school education.

TRIO Services

TRIO Services are designed to improve academic performance, increase student motivation, and facilitate the transition from one level of education to the next.

TRIO Programs and History

The term "TRIO" was coined in the late 1960's to describe three federally-funded educational opportunity outreach programs.  The three original TRIO programs  included Upward Bound (the oldest of the programs), which emerged out of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 in response to the administration's War on Poverty; Educational Talent Search, which was created as part of the Higher Education Act of 1965; and Student Support Services, which was included in the Higher Education Amendments of 1968.

Since the development of the three original TRIO programs, three additional programs have been added.  Educational Opportunity Centers were authorized as part of the Higher Education Amendments of 1972; training programs for federal TRIO programs known as the Training Program for Special Programs Staff and Leadership Personnel were authorized as part of the Higher Education Amendments of 1976.  The sixth program, the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement program, was part of the Amendments of 1986.

Additionally, in 1990, the Upward Bound Math/Science program was created to address the specific need for instruction in the fields of math and science. This program is part of and administered under the same regulations as the classic Upward Bound program as is the Veteran's Upward Bound program, a program designed specifically for veterans.

The Legislative requirements for all TRIO programs can be found in the Higher Education Act of 1965, Title IV, Part A, Subpart 2.