President Surangel Whipps Jr. leaves this week to attend the 44th WESTOP (Western Association of Educational Opportunity Personnel) Conference in Hawaii as a keynote speaker.
As an alumnus of Upward Bound (one of the TRIO programs), he was asked to be the keynote speaker at the conference.
“There’s nothing more important in changing lives than education,” Whipps said. “I was asked last year by Yoichi Rengiil if I could be on the program as keynote speaker. He said it would be nice as alumni of Upward Bound to go and support WESTOP and the TRIO program.”
In support of the program, Whipps said that he is paying his own way and will be bringing some storyboards for auction to fundraise for the organization. He added that the organization helps lobby for the programs to be extended here.
TRIO, under the U.S. Higher Education Act, now includes “eight programs targeted to serve and assist low-income individuals, first-generation college students, and individuals with disabilities to progress through the academic pipeline from middle school to postbaccalaureate programs.”
Upward Bound, Talent Search, and Student Support Service were the three original programs, which have since increased to eight. These 3 programs are offered here in Palau for Palauan students.