The Kansas City Educational Opportunity Center is one of only four EOCs in Missouri and has served area residents since 1979. The program operates on a grant funded by the U.S. Department of Education administered by Metropolitan Community College.
"The history of TRIO is progressive. It emerged out of the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 in response to the administration's War on Poverty. Over the years, the TRIO Programs have been expanded and improved to provide a wide range of services and to reach more students who need assistance." Learn more about the history of TRIO and the programs.
Currently, the program is funded to assist nearly 2,500 individuals annually, two-thirds of whom are low-income, first-generation college students. The primary purpose of EOC is to increase the number of adults enrolling in postsecondary education programs, and accomplished by offering the following free services:
The first step to furthering education beyond high school is to obtain a high school diploma or its equivalent. The EOC can provide information on adult education class sites, sample exam questions and testing center locations.
The college planning process is essential in choosing a college or university that best serves individual students' needs.
EOC advisors guide potential students through identifying the program and certificate or degree path in line with a student's goals. It allows students to explore all options and brings awareness to the importance of accreditation and considering short and long-term goals when deciding on a quality program and cost-effective approach.
Once college(s) have been identified, the next step is to submit admission applications for acceptance into the school(s) of choice. EOC staff assist students in application completion and identify assistance if the cost of the application may cause a hardship.
A grammatically correct, well-crafted application can be crucial at selective colleges and universities.
Paying for college can be a major obstacle.
Applying for financial aid begins with filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). An EOC advisor can assist with the accurate completion and submission of the FAFSA.
- Pay close attention to colleges' financial aid priority dates.
- File the FAFSA as soon after Oct. 1 as possible.
- Missouri state funding - Priority consideration is given to those that submit FAFSA applications by Feb. 1. Applications are accepted through April 1.
EOC provides an understanding of the different types of financial aid, college-cost comparison, financial aid award letters from colleges and student loan borrowing basics.
Available financial literacy materials provide information on bank services, borrowing basics, opening a checking account, budgeting, saving and credit scores.
Scholarships can be an untapped resource and often go unawarded because students did not take the time to apply.
The college or an outside organization may award them, and they are generally based on financial need and/or academic achievement. The key to securing scholarships is to begin the search early – most deadlines are in the spring for the upcoming fall semester.
EOC advisors are also available to guide as you navigate the search process.
Deciding on a career can be confusing and a bit overwhelming.
Trying to identify the ideal working environment (i.e., in the office, outdoors, fast-paced, people-oriented, weekday shifts, etc.) while finding a vocation that lines up with your passion isn't something that's decided in a day.
However, EOC staff can help you gain insight by guiding you through career assessments and interest forms related to your values and skills as you explore different career possibilities.
Defaulted student loans will not go away!
They will continue to accrue interest and collection fees and wages, Social Security benefits, and tax refunds may be garnished. Eligibility to receive federal financial aid is forfeited until the loan is canceled, consolidated or a reasonable payment plan is established.
An EOC advisor will explain your options regarding the defaulted student loan and assist you in getting out of default.
EOC advisors are available to provide virtual or in-person presentations at schools and other community organizations.
Our staff is happy to assist, whether it's discussing the EOC's scope of services, a well-rounded College 101 presentation, or a deep dive into financial aid and scholarships.
We can also table booths at resource fairs and provide FAFSA completion workshops throughout the greater KC metro area.