History of TRIO Programs

A timeline of the TRIO Programs


Upward Bound Program emerged out of the Economic Opportunity Act. Upward Bound helps young students to prepare for higher education. Participants receive instruction in literature, composition, mathematics and science on college campuses after school, on Saturdays and during the summer.


Talent Search, the second outreach program, was created as part of the Higher Education Act. Talent Search serves young people in grades six through twelve. In addition to counseling, participants receive information about college admissions requirements, scholarships and various student financial aid programs.


Student Support Services, which was originally known as Special Services for Disadvantaged Students, was authorized by the Higher Education Amendments and became the third in a series of educational opportunity programs. SSS helps students to stay in college until they earn their baccalaureate degrees. Participants, who include disabled college students, receive tutoring, counseling and remedial instruction.


The Higher Education Amendments added the fourth program to the TRIO group by authorizing the Educational Opportunity Centers. which primarily serve displaced or underemployed workers from families with incomes under $24,000. These Centers help people to choose a college and a suitable financial aid program.


The Education Amendments authorized the Training Program for Federal TRIO Programs, initially known as the Training Program for Special Programs Staff and Leadership Personnel.


Amendments added the sixth program, the Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program This program is designed to encourage low-income students and minority undergraduates to consider careers in college teaching as well as prepare for doctoral study. Students who participate in this program are provided with research opportunities and faculty mentors. This program was named in honor of the astronaut that died in the 1986 space-shuttle explosion.


The US Department of Education created the Upward Bound Math/Science program to address the need for specific instruction in the fields of math and science. The Math/Science Upward Bound programs help students from low-income families to strengthen math and science skills. In addition, students learn computer technology as well as English, foreign language and study skills.


The Higher Education Amendments authorized the TRIO Dissemination Partnership program to encourage the replication of successful practices of TRIO programs.


The Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act amended the Student Support Services (SSS) program to permit the use of program funds for direct financial assistance (Grant Aid) for current SSS participants who are receiving Federal Pell Grants.

The RI Educational Opportunity Center is a TRIO Student Support Service program funded by the US Department of Education. Send comments and suggestions about this website to ndkatzman@ccri.edu.

Last Updated: 9/24/18