Educational Talent Search (ETS) Program

The Educational Talent Search (ETS) Program, funded by the U.S. Department of Education, has hundreds of programs throughout the country and it's territories; ten of which are located in Kentucky.  Eastern Kentucky University has been a host institution for ETS since 1985, and serves the following Kentucky counties: Estill, Garrard, Jackson, Lee, Lincoln, and northern Madison.

The Talent Search program identifies and assists individuals who have the potential to succeed in higher education. Such higher education or postsecondary educational institutions would include: community college, vocational/technical school, four-year college or university, and proprietary school.

The program provides academic, career, and financial information to its participants, and encourages them to graduate from high school and continue a postsecondary education. The program publicizes the availability of financial aid and assists participants with the postsecondary application process.

Talent Search also encourages persons who have not completed education programs at the secondary or postsecondary level to enter or reenter and complete postsecondary education. The goal of Talent Search is to increase the number of youth from disadvantaged backgrounds to complete high school and enroll in and complete their postsecondary education.

The ETS Program has an on-going application and selection process.  ETS representatives work with participants on a monthly basis in group and individual sessions.

Services provided by the program include:

  • Academic, financial, career, or personal advising including guidance on entry or re-entry to secondary or postsecondary programs
  • Career exploration and aptitude assessment
  • Referral to tutorial services when needed
  • Information on postsecondary education
  • Exposure to college campuses
  • Information on student financial assistance and scholarships
  • Assistance in completing college admissions and financial aid applications
  • Assistance in preparing for college entrance exams
  • Mentoring programs
  • Workshops for the families of participants
  • College Prep Academy (for 8th through 12th grade ETS Scholars) 
  • Tutoring Referrals
  • Summer activities

For more information select ETS Services and Resources

ETS representatives are also available to make presentation and provide displays at career fairs, college days, and other local events so individuals can learn more about the program.  All services are FREE!


The Educational Talent Search (ETS) Program at Eastern Kentucky University is designed:

  1. to identify qualified youths with potential for education at the postsecondary level and encourage them to complete secondary school and undertake a program of post-secondary education;
  2. to publicize the availability of, and facilitate the application for, student financial assistance for persons who seek to pursue post-secondary education; and
  3. to encourage persons who have not completed programs of education at the secondary or postsecondary level to enter or reenter and complete these programs.


THE EKU Educational Talent Search Program TRIO project, funded at $332,882 in federal funds from the U.S. Department of Education for the 2013/2014 fiscal year, to serve 725 eligible 6th – 12th grade students in Estill, Garrard, Jackson, Lee, Lincoln, and Madison counties.  This disclosure is made in compliance with Public Law 108-447 Sec 506.