Southwest Association of Student Assistance Programs

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2020 Conference Guest Speakers 


Dr. Arnold Mitchem, President Emeritus of the Council for Opportunity in Education, has been a voice for low-income, first-generation students and individuals with disabilities his entire career. Thanks to his work, the federally funded TRIO Programs have expanded by nearly 400% and now serve more than an estimated 790,000 students at 1,000 colleges and universities.

Maureen Hoyler

Maureen Hoyler has served as the President of the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) since 2013. The Council is a nonprofit organization that advocates for low-income, first-generation students and students with disabilities who aspire to enter and graduate from college. The Council also provides professional development, program improvement services and research for the educators and institutions that serve these young people and adults.

Dr. Sari Byerly

Dr. Sari Byerly is the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at Idaho State University, where she has the pleasure of overseeing nine U.S. Department of Education grants. Her leadership with Idaho State University's Access and Opportunity Programs spans across six campus/outreach locations, 21 high schools, and 250+ miles of the state of Idaho. During Dr. Byerly's tenure at ISU she has taken the reach of TRIO programs from three TRIO grants to its current level of service delivery to include: two TRIO Talent Search, TRIO Upward Bound, TRIO Upward Bound Math Science, TRIO Veterans Upward Bound, TRIO Educational Opportunity Center, TRIO Student Support Services-Classic, TRIO McNair Scholars, and a College Assistance Migrant Program. Dr Byerly has been blessed to have worked for TRIO programs since 2002, starting her journey with the TRIO Upward Bound program at the University of Utah as a student employee. She personally feels she found her home when she began working for TRIO. She was a first-generation college student herself and now holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master’s of Science in Social Psychology from the University of Utah as well as a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Administration from the University of Idaho. She strongly believes in the positive impact College Access and Success programs have on people's lives at all levels whether a participant, an employee, the institution, or the community. Over the years, Dr. Byerly has had the privilege to work towards educational access through her various leadership roles. She has served on the Board of Directors for the Idaho Association of TRIO Professionals (IATP), regionally on Board of Directors for the Northwest Association of Educational Opportunity Programs (NAEOP), and nationally with the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE).

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