What is TRiO?

“Our nation has asserted a commitment to providing educational opportunity for all Americans regardless of race, ethnic background, or economic circumstance. In support of this commitment, Congress established a series of programs to help Americans [from disadvantaged backgrounds enter college, graduate and move on to participate more fully in America’s economic and social life. These Programs are funded under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and are referred to as the TRiO Programs (initially just three programs). While student financial aid programs help students overcome financial barriers to higher education, TRiO programs help students overcome class, social and cultural barriers to higher education.”

Facts about TRIO

There are 25 Federal TRIO Programs in Utah serving more than 7,690 local youth and adults, providing access to postsecondary programs of study for low-income/first generation students. Each of Utah’s publicly funded colleges and universities has at least one TRiO program. In the state of Utah, The combined annual dollar value of these five-year grants totals over $8,193,925.

UTAH’S TRIO pre-college ETS program participants’ average: A 96% high school graduation rate compared to a state average rate of 90.1% And UTAH’S TRIO college SSS program participants’ average: A 40% college graduation rate, compared to the state average of 27.9%. For an approximate yearly expenditure of $1,065 per student, TRIO programs produce significantly higher percentages of graduates than overall state averages among a demographic which typically graduates at a significantly lower percentage rate than the state as a whole.

TRIO programs work! They translate into increased socioeconomic status for low-income/first generation participants and their descendants for generations to come.