Campus: CSU Chico -- July 22, 2002

Educational Talent Search Funded for Four More Years

Educational Talent Search (ETS), a program whose primary purpose is to prepare and motivate students for success in postsecondary education, has received renewed funding at an increased level. The California State University, Chico program will receive $1.5 million over four years, an increase of 15.5 percent.

ETS is one six federal TRIO educational opportunity outreach programs designed to motivate and support students from disadvantaged backgrounds. In 2001, over 323,541 Americans were enrolled in 361 Talent Search programs.

ETS works with qualified 6th-to-12th-grade students in a variety of ways. CSU, Chico students provide monthly workshops in schools, with topics including ACT/SAT preparation, career exploration, study skills, self-esteem, financial aid, scholarship searches and college admissions. In addition, ETS participants receive weekly tutoring/mentoring and attend workshops on campus led by faculty and staff. Each year, ETS staff chaperone students to leadership conferences, college visitations, museums and lectures.

Currently, the program serves 800 students in 22 schools in six local counties: Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Sutter, Tehama and Yuba. The additional funding will allow the program to serve another 200 students, bringing the total to 1,000 each year.

One hundred percent of the ETS class of 2002 graduated from high school, and 93.8 percent will attend a postsecondary institution this coming fall. Forty-four ETS graduates will attend CSU, Chico.

Chico's program is unique in terms of the size of the service area, which is geographically larger than the state of Massachusetts, and in the large number of schools that participate. "We are frequently called by principals asking us to come to their schools," said Allan Bee, director of the program. "We know the need is tremendous in the North State, which is why we go so far and wide."

"It is gratifying that in tight budget times, Congress has seen the value of investing in TRIO programs in general and this program in particular," Bee added. "TRIO programs are a cost-effective way to give students an opportunity to break the cycle of poverty and be successful in their adult lives. Who can argue with that? I also feel lucky to have great support from the university, our target schools, and in the local communities."

CSU, Chico houses three other TRIO Programs including Upward Bound, Upward Bound for ESL Learners, and the new Student Support Services Program. Before becoming the director of ETS in February 2000, Bee previously worked in the Upward Bound programs and started the first-in-the-nation Upward Bound for ESL Learners in 1995.

CONTACT: Kathleen McPartland, 530-898-4260

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