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Finding Resilience and Self Belief in “I AM EOP”

Resilience and Self Belief: "I AM EOP"

EOP’s annual graduation ceremony is among SJSU’s most inspirational spring events (Stanley Olszewski photo).

Why see “I AM EOP,” a performance based on real student stories?

Because the focus will be on the Educational Opportunity Program, but the stories we’ll hear are about all of us at SJSU.

“Most of the stories being performed involve a theme of resilience and self belief,” said EOP Director Debra Y. Griffith. “All students interviewed have had to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles to get to where they are today.

Resilience and Self Belief: "I AM EOP"

“In the stories, we learn about the diversity of life experiences within our student population and the things one can accomplish through hard work and perseverance,” said EOP Director Debra Griffith.

“In the stories, we learn about the diversity of life experiences within our student population and the things one can accomplish through hard work and perseverance.

“Our students are more than just the labels assigned to them (for example, first-generation college student, low-income, historically disadvantaged) or the statistical data that often obscures their journey. ‘I AM EOP’ is the vessel we are using to provide a platform for their voices to be heard.”

Two more reasons to attend: EOP Legacy Awards will be given to former President Don Kassing and Provost Gerry Selter.

Kassing and Selter were instrumental in saving EOP after the program was nearly dismantled after state budget cuts ten years ago.

“Without their institutional will to find new funding, this wouldn’t have been possible no matter how hard the EOP staff worked,” Griffith recalled.

“I AM EOP” will be held Oct. 17 in Morris Dailey Auditorium. A reception begins at 6 p.m. The performance starts at 7 p.m.

Tickets are on sale now at the Event Center box office ($10 general admission, $5 students). All proceeds will go toward EOP scholarships.