Elizabeth Colburn, director of the TRIO Upward Bound program at Hope College, is receiving the 2001 "Social Justice Award in Education" from the City of Holland Human Relations Commission.
Colburn will be recognized during a special awards presentation scheduled in conjunction with the Holland City Council meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 23, at 7 p.m. at Holland City Hall.
The annual award was established to recognize persons or programs that have provided exemplary service with regard to equality for all in the Holland community. Colburn has been with Upward Bound since 1982, and has been director since 1987.
"To have that kind of leadership, that kind of consistency and that kind of dedication is something that needs to be noted," said Alberto R. Serrano, who is community/human relations coordinator with the city. Serrano also cited Colburn's "strong commitment to the education and overall well-being of youth of all ethnic backgrounds."
The Hope College Upward Bound program, which began in the fall of 1968, seeks to build skills and motivation necessary for success in education beyond high school among students from low-income, first-generation families. The program enrolls 70 students annually.
The program is one of 600 Upward Bound programs nationwide, and operates during both the school year and the summer. Funding is provided through the TRIO program administered by the U.S. Department of Education.
The program has a full-time staff of four, including Colburn. Upward Bound also involves about 20 Hope students, either as tutors or interns, and three teachers. Colburn started working with Upward Bound at Hope part-time in 1982 as an English teacher. She joined the staff full-time in 1985 as academic coordinator, became associate director in 1986 and was appointed director the following year.
Her community involvement includes serving on the Latin Americans United for Progress (LAUP) Scholarship Committee; the Holland/Zeeland Area Girls on the Run/Track Executive Management Committee; the St. Francis de Sales Teen Pregnancy Prevention Committee; and the Holland Public Schools Student Support Coalition. She is also on the board of the college's Project TEACH (Teachers Entering A Career through Hope) program.
Her professional affiliations include Holland Hispanic Professionals and Friends; the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development; and the Mid-America Association of Educational Program Personnel.
Prior to coming to the Upward Bound program at Hope, Colburn had taught English at Missisquoi Valley Union High School in Swanton, Vt., for three years. She holds a master's in educational leadership from Western Michigan University, and a bachelor's in English education from Miami University of Ohio.