WINTERVILLE, N.C. – The U.S. Department of Education announced Tuesday that PCC’s $1.4 million-TRiO Educational Opportunity Center (EOC) grant has been renewed through 2026, allowing the college to continue leading adults from disadvantaged backgrounds to higher education.
Established in 2011, PCC’s EOC program has helped more than 10,000 individuals enter or continue a post-secondary program of study. In addition to academic and personal counseling, tutoring, and mentoring, EOC services at Pitt have included career workshops, college admissions application assistance, information on postsecondary education opportunities, and student financial aid assistance.
“The TRiO: Educational Opportunity Centers program is a preeminent asset to the communities we serve,” said PCC Director of TRiO Programs Travis Kinsey. “As a notable pillar in college access, we look forward to continued service to program participants.”
Kinsey said EOC assistance has reached a broad range of adult learners, including individuals with limited English proficiency, youths aging out of foster care, homeless persons, and individuals with disabilities.
EOC began in 1972 and is part of a set of federal educational opportunity outreach programs known as “TRiO,” which is authorized by the Higher Education Act to help low-income, first-generation students and students with disabilities succeed in higher education. As of last year, there were 139 EOCs in America serving more than 192,000 adult learners.
TRiO has played an active role on the PCC campus since 2005. In addition to EOC, the college offers the TRiO Student Support Services program, which aims to increase the retention and graduation rates of college participants through tutoring, workshops, campus visits, leadership development, counseling, and academic planning, and college transfer assistance.