TRiO Programs host 17th annual Student and Parent Leadership Conference

Author: Nijinsky Dix


The University of Notre Dame’s TRiO Programs will host their 17th annual Student and Parent Leadership Conference on Feb. 23 (Saturday) in honor of National TRiO Day, an effort that brings awareness to the needs of first-generation, low-income students while celebrating the accomplishments of TRiO participants.

This year’s conference promises to be inspiring and informative for the 250 guests expected to attend — including TRiO students from around the state and Chicagoland area. Together, conference attendees will celebrate TRiO’s impact on students and communities, act to further promote access to higher education for marginalized populations, and reflect on the important role education plays in creating a more inclusive, diverse and globally connected society.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Next>Now,” a powerful call to action for students and parents alike to remain diligent and dedicated in the pursuit of excellence.

The conference will will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Notre Dame Conference Center (McKenna Hall). It will begin with a college fair and continental breakfast followed by the plenary session — including institutional and community welcomes, a brief history of TRiO Programs, remarks from elected officials, and the keynote address at 9:30 a.m. Conference participants will then attend concurrent sessions offered on topics such as college and career readiness, financial literacy, and diversity and inclusion in academic spaces. The day will conclude with a luncheon and awards ceremony beginning at 12:15 p.m., which will include a feature presentation by Loretta Davidson, a Notre Dame TRiO Talent Search alumna and Purdue University alumna. To provide a dose of Irish luck, a campus tour will be provided by ND Admissions.

This year’s keynote speaker will be Grammy Award-winning music producer, recording artist, philanthropist and actor David Banner.

Sponsors for this year’s conference include Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Multicultural Student Programs and Services at the University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame Federal Credit Union, Black Faculty and Staff Association at Notre Dame, Notre Dame Community Relations Department, First Year Studies at Notre Dame, and Papa Vino’s Italian Kitchen.

TRiO is a set of federally funded college opportunity programs that motivate and support students from disadvantaged backgrounds in their pursuit of a college degree. The programs provide academic tutoring, personal counseling, mentoring, financial guidance and other supports necessary for educational access and retention. Notre Dame’s TRiO Programs have served first-generation and low-income students since the 1960s. For more information, visit

Contact: Nijinsky Dix, director, TRiO Programs, 574-631-6835,