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Talent Search

Talent Search Mission Statement

We believe that education is the best pathway to economic parity and social equality. We encourage and support students from families where educational attainment, finances, or other resources may limit opportunities to achieve their educational goals beyond high school. We strive to ensure that through our services and support, students will be successful against personal odds.

What is the Talent Search Program?
Penn State University Talent Search is a federally funded program through the U.S. Department of Education’s TRIO programs.

Created in 1964, TRIO programs help youth and adults from families with limited financial resources who would be the first in their families to attend college and receive a baccalaureate degree. The Penn State University Talent Search Program is designed to provide services, information, direction, and guidance to middle and high school students in grades 6 through 12 with the two major goals of helping program participants to successfully complete secondary education as well as successfully enroll in some form of post-secondary education or training.

Who participates in Talent Search?
Most Talent Search students come from households with limited financial resources where no one has completed a higher education degree. It is students from these backgrounds who often face the most difficult challenges in completing secondary education and then going on to higher education. It is a requirement of the federal legislation, which governs TRIO programs that at least two-thirds of the participants be potential first-generation college students. The remaining one third of participants need not meet either requirement.