Marshall Sauceda, associate vice president of intercultural affairs at Loyola Marymount University (LMU), was honored with the Western Association of Educational Opportunity Personnel (WESTOP) Achiever’s Award at the 30th annual WESTOP conference in Hawaii April 7th.

The Western Association of Educational Opportunity Personnel is a regional organization composed primarily of education professionals who work with the federal government’s TRIO programs in California, Nevada, Arizona and the Pacific Islands. The U.S. Department of Education’s TRIO programs help identify and support students from economically or educationally disadvantaged populations to gain acceptance in college and succeed after enrollment.

The Western Association presents awards annually to former TRIO students, such as Sauceda, who distinguish themselves in their professional fields after graduating from college.

LMU officials said Sauceda plays a vital role in supervising four LMU departments designed to help international and ethnic minority students succeed academically and socially.

“LMU is a better place because Marshall is here,” said Norma Romero, director of the LMU Upward Bound program, one of the TRIO programs. “He is fiercely committed to the ideals of social justice in general and educational equity in particular.”

As a beneficiary and alumnus of Upward Bound, Sauceda serves as a prime example of how students who face obstacles to success in college can succeed and pave a better path for later generations, Romero said.

“Ask him what Upward Bound did for him and he’ll tell you that he wouldn’t be where he is now without the structure, support and guidance provided to him by the program,” said Romero. “He is the perfect example of what we as TRIO personnel are trying to produce in our own programs.”

Information about LMU’s Upward Bound Program, www.lmu .edu/ub/.