Marquette's pioneering Educational Opportunity Program, established in 1969 by Dr. Arnold Mitchem to support low-income, first-generation students, became a national model and led to the establishment of the Washington D.C.-based Council on Opportunity in Education. Forty-five years later, EOP at Marquette stays true to its name and mission. The documentary Answering the Call, inspired by words from Dr. Mitchem, Grad '81, traces the history of the program from its origin during a time of student protests over racial equality to the stories of today’s participants.
This year, we celebrate the success of Marquette EOP students in Answering the Call. Through photos, news clips and interviews, the filmmakers captured the program's challenges, struggles and successes. The film features Dr. Mitchem’s historical and frank perspective, stories from inaugural class graduates, and others involved in the program's formative years.
Still, 45 years later — despite the program's accomplishments and success stories — many of the obstacles faced by low-income, first-generation students of the program's past remain the same. The fight for college access continues nationwide, and federal funding is at risk.