Federal TRIO Programs

The Federal TRIO Programs at Suffolk University are housed in the Center for Academic Access & Opportunity (CAAO). These federal grants have been continuously founded at Suffolk University since 2007 and help prepare income-eligible, first-generation, and underrepresented students with their transition into college and graduate school.

Suffolk University currently hosts three federal TRIO grants:

  • Ronald E. McNair Scholars: a selective undergraduate research and graduate school preparatory program for full-time undergraduate students at Suffolk University with the intent to pursue doctoral programs post-graduation
  • Upward Bound: a program for eligible participants from our target school—Tech Boston Academy—and the Dorchester area to help encourage and prepare students to enroll in post-secondary programs immediately following their high school graduation
  • Veterans Upward Bound: a preparatory program for eligible military veterans who reside in one of our target counties—Suffolk, Middlesex, Essex, and Norfolk—and are interested in enrolling in a program of higher education, including certificates, associates, and bachelor’s degrees

The Center for Academic Access & Opportunity also supports the university’s first-generation college student population. It collaborates with the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion, the Division of Student Success, and many academic departments each year to honor first-generation college students, staff, and faculty on campus around November 8th – the anniversary of the Higher Education Act of 1965 that established the first TRIO programs and, thus, support for first-generation students in higher education institutions.

Please contact us or stop by our office to learn more about our programs and services. 

Center for Academic Access & Opportunity Staff

Abraham E. Peña-Talamantes, PhD
Director, Center for Academic Access and Opportunity
Principal Investigator, TRIO Programs 

McNair Scholars Staff

Jarvis Chen, PhD
Program Director

Antonio Amaro Diaz
Academic and Research Advisor

Maria Cecilia Gomez
Program Assistant

Kate Swartz
Program Assistant

Upward Bound Staff

Samienta Pierre-Vil, MPA
Program Director

Candice Cole
Academic Counselor

Veterans Upward Bound Staff

Alicia Reddin, PhD
Program Director

Nicholas Charrette
Academic and Recruitment Advisor

Jennifer Waden
Academic and Recruitment Advisor

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