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NMSU TRIO coordinator attends leadership institute at Yale

New Mexico State University TRIO Student Support Services Program Coordinator Trese Collins was selected to attend the third annual Council for Opportunity in Education Executive Leadership Institute for College Opportunity Professionals. The event was held at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, Oct. 6-9, and provided participants with the tools needed to lead in the college access and success community.


Woman stands by a sign.
Trese Collins, New Mexico State University TRIO Student Support Services program coordinator, attended the third annual Council for Opportunity in Education Executive Leadership Institute for College Opportunity Professionals at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, in early October. (Courtesy photo)

Collins said it was an honor to be selected for the leadership institute and considers it a professional highlight.

“This experience has strengthened my communication and advocacy skills when supporting and promoting college access,” she said. “It has equipped me to be a more robust leader on the institutional and state level. Also, it has provided me with the aptitude needed to promote social capital in higher education and the tools necessary to promote state and federal policy, which advances the interests of low-income, first-generation students.”

The event consisted of lectures, workshops and facilitated exercises to enhance leadership skills, and the curriculum focused on topics such as effective leadership, communications, negotiation strategies and team-building.

“Trese’s representation of New Mexico State University at the Leadership Institute provided her the opportunity to enhance her college access and success skillset that will benefit the TRIO Student Support Services Program and New Mexico State University,” said Tony Marin, assistant vice president of student engagement. “The Leadership Institute’s invitation to Trese is a testament to her capacity as a leader as well as the many outstanding silent leaders such as Trese who work at New Mexico State University.”

Participants worked in small groups on case studies at the event and will continue to work via conference call and webinars to develop a formal presentation that will be presented at the COE Leadership Summit in March 2020 in Washington, D.C.

“Another treasured component of attending the leadership institute was meeting other professionals from across the nation,” Collins said. “It gave me the opportunity to network, discuss, collaborate and problem solve issues that many of our students, states and institutions are currently experiencing to include equity gaps, social mobility and reframing the first generation narrative. The ability to have crucial conversations and promoting solutions for the students we serve will be instrumental in advancing the retention and success of our students.”