Here are some resources to help you support your TRIO program.
How Can I Fight for TRIO Through FACEBOOK and TWITTER?
Step 1: Connect with COE
Connect with the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) – the national advocacy group representing TRIO programs and students – to find out the latest happening with TRIO on Capitol Hill and the White House!
Follow us on Twitter @COETalk
Help us spread the word at Facebook.com/CouncilforOpportunityinEducation
For more information about COE and TRIO, please contact Rheanna Martinez at (202) 347-7430 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 2: “Like” and/or “Follow” ourpolitical leaders!
Find the Facebook pages of the President and our political leaders!
Follow political leaders on twitter at: @whitehouse, @BarackObama, @VP, @SenatorReid, @SenatorHarkin, @Daniel_Inouye, @SpeakerBoehner, @NancyPelosi, @Clyburn, @ChrisVanHollen
Look up your own legislators online at http://www.contactingthecongress.org/ to find out their information on Facebook and Twitter as well!
Post/tweet messages on their pages about TRIO!
“Do not cut TRIO in FY 2012!”
“TRIO is important to me because . . . . ”
Start trending topics on Twitter!
Post links to news stories and videos about your program!
Here is a great example of a promo video by South Seattle’s Upward Bound Program:
HOW CAN I FIGHT FOR TRIO USING PETITIONS?
Step One: Sign COE’s Petition to Save TRIO!
Last month, COE started an online petition at www.change.org/coe. Simply by signing on, each supporter sent the message below to each of their Members of Congress and the White House. As of this writing, more than 14,400 individuals have signed up!
Step Two: Create Your Own Petition!
In response to recent remarks by House Education and Workforce Chairman, John Kline (R-MN) Minnesota TRIO circulated a letter and collected approximately 1,100 signatures of TRIO supporters throughout the state! A copy of the petition was delivered to their entire congressional delegation and local media outlets.
How Can I Fight for TRIO Through Local Newspapers
Many newspapers will accept opinion pieces submitted by members of the community. Opinion editorials—commonly referred to as “op-eds”—allow you to make arguments in support of TRIO to a newspaper, in this case, to your local major newspaper. Most papers publish an op-ed page next to the editorial page. The op-ed page contains columns written by the paper’s own columnists and/or syndicated columnists. In some cases, newspapers will publish guest columns or opinion pieces written by authorities who don’t generally make their living as newspaper columnists.
Here is the structure of how to write an op-ed:
- Take a stand in a provocative, informative, interesting, creative and insightful way.
- The ideal length for most newspapers is 500 to 800 words. Check the length restrictions before submitting an op-ed.
- Be creative, but to the point. Editors like the use of vignettes and analogies, but want to first know what is new and important.
Submitting an Op-Ed
- Find out the name of the op-ed editor along with their address, phone, fax, e-mail. This information may be found online. Most op-ed editors use the titles “opinion editor” or “commentary editor.”
- Submit your op-ed to one newspaper at a time. Most newspapers insist on exclusivity for the op-ed they run, at least within their circulation area. If your piece is not accepted by one area newspaper, try another paper.
- Write a short paragraph introducing yourself and your issue to the editor.
- Cut and paste your op-ed within the body of the e-mail as well as attach it as a Word document.
- Once you send your e-mail, follow up with a phone call the next day. If the reporter is not available, leave a voicemail/phone message saying you are “following up” on the e-mail you sent.