Preparing Educators as Leaders
  • Home
  • Director of KU TRIO Talent Search inducted into Mid-America Education Hall of Fame

Director of KU TRIO Talent Search inducted into Mid-America Education Hall of Fame

Tuesday, May 07, 2019

LAWRENCE – Rebecca Dukstein, director of the TRIO Talent Search program at the University of Kansas, was inducted into the Mid-America Education Hall of Fame, sponsored by the Kansas City Kansas Community College Foundation, April 27 at the Mid-America Education Hall of Fame Awards and Scholarship Event. 

“It’s amazing and humbling to be honored alongside so many community and educational leaders I’ve admired over the years,” Dukstein said. “In the field of college access and success, we help youths walk through the doors of opportunity toward higher education. Every day, we support students in becoming who they are meant to be, and that feels pretty incredible.” 

Dukstein, a KU alumna, has served as director of KU’s office for the federally funded TRIO Talent Search program since 1994, and she has spent her entire career advocating for students from disadvantaged backgrounds in their pursuit of a college education. Talent Search, one of eight federally funded TRIO programs in the KU Achievement & Assessment Institute’s Center for Educational Opportunity Programs (CEOP), prepares students in grades six through 12 for postsecondary education, working with about 1,000 middle and high school students from Wyandotte County each year. Many TRIO students are the first in their family to attend college. 

For the past 25 years, Dukstein has helped thousands of middle and high school students in northeast Kansas pursue their college dreams by providing academic and career-exploration workshops, college preparation sessions, family events, advising, college visits, assistance with college-application and financial-aid processes, and summer programming. She also oversees the “YES Scholars” scholarship program, a partnership between KU TRIO Talent Search and KCKCC that provides eighth-graders with a scholarship to the community college. She served for over 15 years as a national trainer in the field of college access and success.

Dukstein also has written state and federal education grants that have brought more than $10 million to KU to fund programs that increase educational opportunities for students in northeast Kansas who otherwise might not go to college. TRIO Programs like Talent Search help achieve KU’s Bold Aspirations goals of engaging with local communities and partners to ensure student success.

Photo: Courtesy of Kansas City Kansas Community College.

10th among public universities for its master’s and doctoral programs
—U.S. News & World Report
#1 public program in nation for special education
—U.S. News & World Report
Assists public schools and other partners in all 105 Kansas counties
$938,377 in scholarship funds awarded to 420+ students
Research expenditures of $36,804,773 for 2011-12
Research from KU’s largest grant, the $24.5 million SWIFT project, assists educators, children, and families across the United States
The award-winning special education faculty published 140 refereed articles, 11 books, and 60 chapters in 2015-16
Students with intellectual disabilities are participating in KU undergraduate programs through a grant-funded KU special education program
Researchers on a $3.5 million grant are collecting data on an innovative reading program designed to teach reading to students with the most significant disabilities in seven Kansas school districts
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
KU Today
Connect with KU School of Education

KU School of Education Facebook page KU School of Education YouTube Channel KU School of Education Twitter Feed KU School of Ed instagram icon KU School of Ed LinkedIn icon