IATP Student Highlights

Aaron Stahlman, Idaho State University, Upward Bound Program

Aaron Stahlman

Idaho State University | TRIO Upward Bound Program

My time in Upward Bound has been life changing, it gave me a chance to get a jump start on my future that I never thought was possible. I am currently enrolled at ISU and am thankful to Upward Bound for helping me make my decision for post-secondary education clear. This program is now a part of me and has completely changed my life forever. I decided to give back to the program and work as a tutor/mentor during the summers. Knowing that I am helping over hundreds of students is a phenomenal feeling. I hope to one day change to life of an Upward Bound student just as Upward Bound and its staff has changed mine.


Shanna Torp, TRIO graduate

Shanna Torp

North Idaho College | Student Support Services Program

My name is Shanna, I’m living proof that TRIO works!! As a young mother, I found myself in living in an abusive marriage fueled by alcohol and drugs. I had no resources to get out and I felt trapped. To make matters worse, I lost everything I owned in a fire and found myself homeless with 2 kids. I relocated to Idaho, and was given the opportunity to re-invent myself with my parents’ support. I decided to pursue a college education because getting a degree was the one thing I knew could never be lost, destroyed or taken away from me.

It had been 20+ years since I had been out of school – I was scared to death! I wondered if I would fit in and if I could handle the work load. Despite my anxieties, I enrolled at North Idaho College and soon found out that times had changed – the traditional idea of college as I knew it was all available on a computer! One of the biggest hurdles for me was math; I used TRIO resources and was able to complete all my degree requirements. I graduated from both NIC and LCSC, where I earned a Bachelor’s degree with honors. I’m currently working full-time in my chosen field and loving my job. Thank you TRIO!!

Maria Venegas, McNair Scholars Program graduate

Maria Venegas

Boise State University | McNair Scholars Program

I came to this country at the age of 17 with no English skills and from a disadvantaged socio-economic background. Working alongside my parents as farmworkers, my siblings and I learned the value of hard work and education. It was my resilience and persistence that helped me find the resources to attend college. As a first-generation student, the idea of a postgraduate education seemed an impossibility. However, becoming a part of the Ronald E. McNair Scholar Program was one of the best decisions I made during my time at Boise State University. Thanks to the McNair Scholars Program, I was able to accomplish my dream of becoming an Anthropologist. The McNair Scholars Program provided the tools, knowledge, opportunities and financial support to pursue postgraduate education.

In December 2016 I obtained a PhD in Medical Anthropology and a Master’s of Public Health from the University of Pittsburgh; I am currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Centers of Health and Aging, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College. This journey would not have been possible without the support and assistance from the McNair Program at the beginning of my career.

TRIO Students Help Stock Campus Food Pantry

Original Article 

Boise State’s TRIO programs, housed in the College of Education, along with Borah and Capital high school programs, helped collect 355 pounds of food and personal care items and $600 in financial donations during a two-week drive to benefit the Campus Food Pantry at Boise State. TRIO students and faculty and staff contributed.

TRIO programs nationwide support traditionally under-served students in their quest to obtain a high school diploma and continue on to a post-secondary education. The last Saturday in February is National TRIO Day, a day recognized by Congress, in which students served by these programs give back to their community.

The Campus Food Pantry is located in the Office of the Dean of Students in the Campus School Building, Suite 120. In partnership with ASBSU, the pantry aims to provide food assistance to Boise State students facing food insecurity, offering nourishing meal and snack options, as well as nutritional guidance and education. The pantry also is stocked with hygiene items and school supplies. Since opening in January 2018, the pantry has served 180 individual students and logged more than 500 visits. This spring, two additional satellite locations opened in the College of Innovation and Design (Albertsons Library, second floor) and the Gender Equity Center in the Student Union Building.

Space Camp Grads

An Atmosphere for Space Education

Original Article 

Outer space can feel like a giant leap for a kid who has never even traveled across the country.

But for a group of North Idaho high school students, two Upward Bound programs run by the University of Idaho have put the stars within reach.

Over the past two summers, about 40 students experienced simulated space flight and zero gravity at NASA’s Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama — the culmination of a curriculum meant to spark their interest in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.

The summer curriculum geared toward soon-to-be first-generation college students was “by far the best one we’ve ever done,” said Arielle Horan, director of UI’s Silver Valley Upward Bound program.

The Upward Bound project is one of seven federally funded TRIO projects that are operated by the UI College of Education as a means to provide educational opportunities for all Americans regardless of race, ethnic background or economic status. The space-themed program began in summer 2015. A group of students from Kellogg and Wallace spent time at UI’s Moscow campus and North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene to study sociology, science, literature and foreign language, all with a space emphasis. The success of the curriculum spawned its adoption by another Upward Bound program, Bridge Idaho, in 2016.

Students at INL Stem Event

INL Hosts STEM Event for Underserved Students

Editor’s note: The story has been updated to correct the attribution of two quotes from Ramiro Diaz to Eric Olvera.

Three buses carrying nearly 100 students from all over the state arrived Friday morning at the Idaho National Laboratory to start the first INL Multicultural Leaders in STEM event.

INL K-12 STEM partnered with TRiO on the event in an effort to reach out to minority, underserved and potential first-generation college students from 30 high schools throughout the state.

A goal of the event, according to an INL news release, was to break down stereotypes about science, technology, engineering and math careers, and connect the students with opportunities, role models and mentors to instill a passion for STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects.

Jenny Gallegos

First Generation Student Heads to Law School

Original Article

First generation student, Jenny Gallegos, faced an uphill battle to earn her education but now she is attending University of Idaho College of Law

Jenny Gallegos never expected to go to law school.

Or, for that matter, graduate from high school.

The youngest of six children and daughter of Mexican immigrants, Gallegos faced an uphill battle to earn her education from an early age.“

I remember being very little — 6, maybe 7 years old — and writing things over and over so it would stick,” said Gallegos, whose own parents had quit school after the fourth grade.

TRIO Alum Becomes an Attorney

Yvonne Franco Perez, a former ETS student from American Falls High School, overcame many obstacles to become an attorney. Her success story shows that TRIO works!

It is official, I took the oath and pledge and I am now an attorney. Thank you for all of your support. You have been with me throughout my entire journey and I truly appreciate it!

Tony Lemos: Pearl Hill Memorial Scholarship Recipient

Tony Lemos, a 2015 graduate of Aberdeen High School, and a three year participant of Idaho State University’s TRiO Upward Bound program; was awarded The Pearl Hill Memorial Scholarship for the 2015-2016 school year. The Pearl Hill Memorial Scholarship is a regional scholarship that includes the states of Alaska, Washington, Oregon, and Idaho. This scholarship is awarded to two candidates each year who demonstrate outstanding leadership ability, civic involvement, and commitment to higher education.

During Tony’s high school career he has shown himself to be a phenomenal student, with a long list of academic and extracurricular activities. 

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