The U.S. Department of Education has awarded Centralia College $1.98 million over five years to support the TRIO Talent Search program for middle and high school students in Lewis and south Thurston counties.
Talent Search currently serves 825 middle and high school students in Centralia, Chehalis, Mossyrock, Napavine, Onalaska, Pe Ell, Rainier, Rochester, Tenino, Toledo, and Winlock. Two-thirds of those students are low-income or from parents with no college education.
“These funds allow us to provide academic monitoring and advising, career exploration, and help with college planning and applications or with financial aid and scholarships,” said Liisa Preslan, Centralia College TRIO director. “We start working with students in middle school and our Talent Search specialists follow and track them all the way to graduation. It really pays off for these students to have that kind of support at such a critical time in their lives.”
Over the last five years, 96 percent of Talent Search students have graduated from high school and 76 percent have gone on to college.
Centralia College has offered the Talent Search program since 1985; it’s the largest program in the state.
For more information on TRIO programs at Centralia College, call 360-736-9391, ext. 223.