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Verlanic Inducted as Council for Opportunity in Education Board Chair Elect


The Council for Opportunity in Education is pleased to announce that Amy L. Verlanic, Executive Director of The Institute for Educational Opportunities at Montana Tech, was inducted as the Council’s Board Chair Elect on September 8 at the Council’s annual conference in New York City, NY. Verlanic, an Anaconda, MT native, is the youngest professional and only woman from west of the Mississippi River to have held this prestigious national office. Her charge will include representing the needs of 2,900 federally funded programs serving 840,000 Americans.

"It gives me great confidence to know that COE’s 2013-2016 leadership is under her watchful eye," reports Council President Dr. Arnold Mitchem. "During her time on the board, Mrs. Verlanic has proven herself as an effective financial leader, working to ensure the Council’s investment portfolio remains stable in the wake of turbulent economic times and diversifying our resources and revenue streams. She has demonstrated skill in developing the future leaders of our board and the education community with commitment and integrity."

Mitchem praised the successful efforts of Verlanic and the rest of the Council’s Board of Directors to urge Congress to:

• Authorize a FY 12 budget increase of $14.6 million for TRIO programs, making TRIO the only higher education program that was grown rather than cut. This major win kept an estimated 3,000 low- income students enrolled in colleges across America.

• Investigate the recent misadministration of the U.S. Department of Education funds allocated for educational opportunity programs and students.

• Under the threat of sequestration; minimize reductions to Pell Grants and limit interest rates on student loans to protect disadvantaged students’ ability to earn an education.

"Amy works effectively with her Montana students, helping them graduate and enter college. Commendably, she is just as effective at protecting and expanding all students’ opportunities within the national legislation and policy arena. We are honored to have a fighter of her caliber on the Council board," Mitchem said.

Verlanic currently works as the Institute for Educational Opportunities Executive Director at Montana Tech, where she is responsible for fifteen outreach programs, 19 schools and nearly 4,000 pre-college and college students across Montana. In her time at Montana Tech, she has secured over $6 million dollars in federal grants for Montana students. Her passion to eradicate the obstacles faced by low-income, first-generation students in achieving a college education led her to volunteer with the Council at the regional and national level. Her service to the Council will require three years of extensive national and European travel. "Montana Tech is proud to have one of our employees contributing to the global educational community in such a meaningful way." commented Vice Chancellor Doug Abbott, Verlanic’s immediate supervisor.

Established in 1981, The Council for Opportunity in Education is a Washington, D.C. based nonprofit organization dedicated to furthering the expansion of educational opportunities throughout the United States. Through its numerous membership services, the council works in conjunction with colleges, universities, and agencies that host TRIO Programs to specifically help low-income students enter college and graduate. For more information about the Council, visit the website at www.coenet.us.