TRIO_Talent Search

To identify disadvantaged youths with potential for postsecondary education; to encourage them in continuing in and graduating from secondary school and in enrolling in programs of postsecondary education; to publicize the availability of student financial aid; and to increase the number of secondary
and postsecondary school dropouts who reenter an educational program.

Agency - Department of Education

The Department of Education ensures equal access to education and promotes educational excellence through coordination, management and accountability in Federal education programs. The Department works to supplement and complement educational efforts on all levels, encouraging increased involvement by the public, parents and students.

Program Accomplishments

The program supported 471 projects serving approximately 364,000 students in 2008.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Funds are awarded to institutions and agencies to identify disadvantaged youths with potential for postsecondary education, encourage them to complete secondary school and undertake postsecondary educational training, and publicize existing forms of student aid.

Projects may also provide tutorial services for youths being encouraged to undertake or reenter programs of postsecondary education.

A grantee may not use the project as a part of its recruitment program.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Institutions of higher education, public and private agencies and organizations, a combination of the above and, in exceptional cases, secondary schools may apply.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Individuals residing in the target area or attending a target school who have potential for education at the postsecondary level and who can benefit from one or more of the services provided by the project. Two-thirds must be low-income individuals who are also potential first generation college students. Project participants must be between 11 and 27 years old (exceptions allowed). Required low-income criteria for participants are stated in application materials.


Costs will be determined in accordance with the Education Department General Administrative Regulations EDGAR). This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-87.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

This program is eligible for coverage under E.O.

12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No.


Application Procedures

Develop a proposal in accordance with regulations, applications, and timetables issued by the Secretary of Education; no State plan is required. Requests for program applications should be made to the Federal TRIO Programs. This program is subject to the provisions of the Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR).

Award Procedures

Selected nonfederal field readers evaluate new proposals on the basis of the selection criteria specified in 34 CFR 643.21 and 34 CFR 643.22. Grantees will be selected on the basis of satisfactory proposals and availability of funds.


Deadlines are published in the Federal Register.


Higher Education Act of 1965, Title IV, Part A, Subpart 2, Sections 402B, as amended, 20 U.S.C. 1070a-12.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

About 90 to 180 days.




Continuation awards are approved for up to 5 years on an annual basis, subject to the availability of funds.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

This program has no statutory formula or matching requirements.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Four or 5-year projects, annual awards. Continuations are subject to the availability of funds.

Post Assistance Requirements


Performance reports are required on an annual basis.


In accordance with the Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR), 34 CFR (75.702, 74.61.)


In accordance with 34 CFR 75.730, 75.731, and 75.732.

Financial Information

Account Identification



(Grants) FY 07 $142,884,182; FY 08 est $142,900,000; and FY 09 est $142,884,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

The average 2008 award is expected to be approximately $303,000. The minimum grant award is $220,000.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

EDGAR and 34 CFR 643.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office


Headquarters Office

Federal TRIO Programs, Office of Postsecondary Education, Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC 20202- 5249. Contact: Loretta Brown, E-mail:; Telephone: (202) 502-7539.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

For new awards, applicants will be selected on the basis of the criteria set forth in 34 CFR 643.21.

Co-founders William Mann and David Mravyan devised the Sensimat during a mandatory project for their MBA at the Richard Ivey School of Business in Canada. Sensimat is a device that helps manage and assess pressure among wheelchair users.

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