Scott Robertson, Educational Counselor for Heart of Appalachia Talent Search (HATS), will be recognized as West Virginia’s 2013 Outstanding TRiO Achiever Tuesday, April 1, during the Mid-Eastern Association of Educational Opportunity Program Personnel’s conference at Virginia Beach, Va.
He was selected at last fall’s conference of the West Virginia Association of Educational Opportunity Program Personnel (known as WV TRiO) and the Virginia Association of Educational Opportunity Personnel, held in Virginia Beach.
TRIO equals educational opportunity for low-income, first generation, veteran and disabled Americans. In support of this commitment, Congress established a series of programs to help low-income and first generation Americans 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 TRiO 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. The Federal TRIO programs are Upward Bound, Educational Talent Search, Educational Opportunity Centers, Upward Bound Math and Science, Veterans’ Upward Bound, Student Support Services and Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement.
Robertson has an extensive personal history with TRiO. He was a participant in both the Upward Bound and then Students Support Services Programs at Marshall. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Social Studies, graduating cum laude and a Master of Arts in Adult and Technical Education.
HATS Director Angela Holley said, “He has been instrumental in the development of new program services and has established relationships with participants and staff that go far beyond their time in our program. He has also become an advocate on the state, regional and national levels through his commitment to TRiO Associations, where he has served in various leadership roles including serving as president of the WV TRiO Association.” He also worked to organize West Virginia’s TRiO’s Student Leadership Conference for three years.
A leader in his community, Robertson serves on the Wayne Town Council. In this position, he has led community projects for change including the development of a recreation center that will benefit local youth and installation of outdoor exercise equipment to encourage health and wellness. In addition, he coordinated a new spring festival, Trout’s Hill Day. He has also been active as the president of the Wayne County Convention and Visitors Bureau and vice president and webmaster of the Wayne County Family Resource Network. Robertson also has been a volunteer to support College Goal Sunday for the past five years.
The mission of WV TRiO is to promote equal educational opportunity and greater accessibility to higher education for TRiO-eligible students. WV TRiO seeks to broaden access to and retention in postsecondary education for low-income, first generation, veteran or disabled students. To learn more, see WVTRiO.org or contact their executive board at firstname.lastname@example.org.