GVSU names director of TRIO Veterans Upward Bound

headshot: Tim Marroquin
Tim Marroquin is the new director for TRIO Veterans Upward Bound.
Image Credit: University Communications

Tim Marroquin brings a diverse, yet familiar background to his new role as director for TRIO Veterans Upward Bound. 

VUB is a new federally funded program at Grand Valley that will provide free academic support services to low-income veterans who want to complete degree programs.

Since 2013, Marroquin has served as assistant director of TRIO Educational Talent Search, a program housed in Grand Valley's College of Education. Early in his career, Marroquin was a police officer/detective in Albuquerque, New Mexico, near Kirtland Air Force Base.

"The cultures are similar: law enforcement and the military," he said.

Marroquin said he wanted to apply for the VUB position because the program falls under the umbrellas of the national TRIO programs and Grand Valley's Division of Inclusion and Equity.

"The work is close to my heart as I was a first-generation college student, and knowing the values of inclusion have helped form my previous work with TRIO," he said.

From his new office in the Eberhard Center, on the Pew Grand Rapids Campus, Marroquin will oversee work of the grant. In October, Grand Valley received a $1.3 million, five-year grant from the U.S. Department of Education to establish the program. Wayne State University is the only other institution in Michigan to offer VUB.

The program will eventually serve 125 pre-college, low-income, first-generation veterans per year from Kent, Ottawa, Muskegon and Allegan counties. The college access and degree completion services tailored to veterans will include advising and mentoring programs, instructor-led computer courses, course materials and supplies.

His immediate roles are to raise awareness of the program and connect with veterans' organizations. Marroquin has already fielded a number of calls about VUB and said he looks forward to meeting and helping veterans who qualify for the program.

"I hope they will realize the connections they will have to each other, beyond military service, because of VUB. It's sort of like Laker for a Lifetime, at TRIO we say, 'We are TRIO,'" he said.

A reception to formally welcome VUB to campus and the community is planned for January 31, from 3-5 p.m., at the Eberhard Center; details will be announced later.

For more information about VUB, visit gvsu.edu/vub.