40th Anniversary

The Board of Directors of the Council for Opportunity in Education has been fighting for the past forty years for equal access to higher education for everyone. This year, we invite you to reflect, recommit and celebrate forty years of excellence with the Council.

A Timeline — The Genesis of NCEOA and Development of COE

Turning 40 is traditionally a time to take stock, to measure the triumphs and lessons of past years and prepare for the challenges to come. In this, COE’s 40th year, we are grateful for all we have accomplished with the help of allies who have accompanied us on our journey. Together we have made real progress in helping low income, first generation and minority students and students with disabilities improve their lives by attending and graduating from college.

This year we will look back, not to rest on our laurels, but for inspiration and renewal. We will reaffirm our mission of improving the lives of students and the committed professionals who guide them.

There is still so much good work to do. With you, we look forward to all the tasks ahead.

Stories of Impact

On December 16-17, 1977 at the Marriott Hotel in New Orleans, a visionary and courageous group of men and women met to develop a survival strategy for the federally funded Special Programs for Students from Disadvantaged Backgrounds, now known as TRIO. Out of that meeting and others, and because of tremendous effort and sacrifice, emerged the Council for Opportunity in Education.

Now, TRIO does not just survive — it thrives. COE is a strong and articulate voice for low-income, first-generation students, students with disabilities, adult learners, and veterans in American education. Millions of students from disadvantaged backgrounds have been served by TRIO. For that, TRIO students and professionals alike, owe a debt of gratitude to these pioneers. Share your personal story on Twitter using the hashtag #COETurns40.

Recommitting to COE

At COE, we take the 40th anniversary as an opportunity to say thank you for your commitment to our mission. As we look to 2021 and beyond, we’re going to need even more energy and resources to keep serving students and fighting for college opportunity because we’re in it for the long haul.

To commemorate the 40th anniversary would you consider making a special contribution of $40 to COE? Your financial support this year and over the years guarantees that the Council will have the resources and flexibility to improve educational opportunities and outcomes for our most underserved students. With your support, surely, we will be ready for whatever the next forty years bring.

Donate online by clicking the button below or by submitting this paper form Document is available for download (.pdf).

Celebrating 40 Years of Excellence

The theme for this year’s annual conference is 40 Years of Good Trouble: Equity, Access, and Success. For college access professionals, attending this year’s annual conference either virtually or in-person in Atlanta from September 12 to 15 would be an investment in professional development that will provide more impactful leverage for programs and participants and a chance to celebrate 40 years of excellence.