February 25th, 2017 was the celebration of Federal TRiO programs that are implemented in various schools across the United States. These federal educational programs were created in order to offer aid and resources to students that hail from disadvantaged backgrounds; these backgrounds include being a student of a minority, or being a first-generation college student, or having a documented disability, or come from a low-income household. These programs have helped students across the country to not only succeed academically, but also chase their dreams, and become successful in their respective careers.

Such programs include Upward Bound, which helps high school students succeed academically during their high school career, and get them ready to think about college; Talent Search, which targets high school juniors and seniors, and encourages them to attend college; and many more programs. These programs help promote the importance of a college education, offer a wide range of services, and provide opportunities that can result in jumpstarting a career immediately after college.

With such programs, we wouldn't have famous celebrities such as Viola Davis, star of The Help, Fences, and How to Get Away with Murder, nor would we have Angela Bassett, star of American Horror Story, and the upcoming Black Panther film. Not only have actors rose out of these programs, but also musicians, politicians, and those that are in the field of STEM.

Without these TRiO programs, an abundance of students wouldn't have found their way to success. Doors wouldn't have opened to those that come from disadvantaged backgrounds. Everybody deserves an education, and other opportunities. No matter what your identities are, you deserve a well-rounded education that can lead to your success. Help support programs and services that are like TRiO. With Betsy Devos as the United States Secretary of Education, these services could be at risk. Schools that advocate for social justice, and the equality of others, must uphold their mission, and protect the rights of their students, and their right to receive and earn an education.

TRiO helps garner success. We need to continue to support these services to create even more success stories for our communities, and for our nation as a whole.