Spotlight on Educational Opportunity Center

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educational-opportunity-cen recently spoke with Curlgin Robertson, Assitant Director of Educational Opportunity Center, via email. They talked about the inspirations and challenges of running a nonprofit organization in Long Beach.

How long has Educational Opportunity Center been around? Did it start in Long Beach?

The Educational Opportunity Center has been around for a long time. There are different chapters of the organization throughout the United States, but ours services Long beach and surrounding areas.

Describe Educational Opportunity Center. Tell us a little about your nonprofit, your mission, the people you serve or your goals.

The staff at Educational Opportunity Center (EOC) in Long Beach is on a search for adults in Long Beach and surrounding areas looking to go back to school or needing advice in road-mapping their educational goals. The EOC staff has an extensive knowledge in GED testing, postsecondary advisement, financial aid information, and vocational education. The best part about the EOC services are they are free of charge upon eligibility.

The EOC program is funded by the Department of Education. It is designed to assist adult participants, nineteen years of age and older, who want to enter or re-enter high school, or postsecondary education. EOC’s mission is to assist participants reach their educational and career goals by providing quality information and guidance services. Eligible participants are US citizens/permanent resident; live within the target areas of the program; and are 19 years or older.

How is Educational Opportunity Center different from similar nonprofits?

Our organization is the only one of it’s kind in the Long Beach area. Most organizations provide help with job placement but we are dedicated to helping adults strive for more. Education is the way to help individuals succeed in life and possibly help some to get out of poverty or low income situations.

How is Educational Opportunity Center involved with the community?

EOC has financial aid workshops every Thursday at 1pm and it is open to the public. Some of our staff also goes to the Long Beach Adult School Thursday nights to speak with students about their educational goals. If a student has specific questions about colleges or classes our staff will research the information and return to them with everything they need.

What is the most rewarding part of running Educational Opportunity Center?

The most rewarding part of our organization is seeing our students succeed. We keep in contact with our students even after we have provided the services they need just to see how they are doing. When an adult tells us they have graduated college, are in no school debt and are thriving we know that we have done our job.

What are the challenges you face — as a nonprofit, as an advocacy group, or in your industry?

The challenges we face are getting the word out to the community about the services we provide. We do not have a lot of money to advertise so it is hard to reach out. We want to help the community to become better educated and more successful and we need help in recruiting these adults.

Do you have any special events or fundraisers you’d like to tell us about?

Financial Aid workshops every Thursday from 1-2pm in the office.

One Last Thing:

It is never too late to go back to school and strive to improve your life. Here at EOC we know it’s difficult but we are here to help. We supply all of the resources you need plus onsite counseling for all of your questions and concerns. The office provides financial aid workshops every Thursday from 1-2pm and is open to those who are interested in learning more about what their education can do for them. As the staff at EOC says,“Determine your Path, Follow your Dreams.”

Educational Opportunity Center Details:
Address: 3447 Atlantic Ave. Long Beach, Ca 90807
Phone Number: (562)570-3715
Website: www.csulb/

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