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Educational Talent Search charts path to student success

Morehead State’s Educational Talent Search (ETS) program is preparing students for college and career success, and that is evidenced by a recent project to track long-term student success. 

The program tracked ETS students who graduated high school in 2012 for the past six years and found that 95 percent of them received a college degree within six years of graduating high school. The 2012 affiliated counties included: Bath, Carter, Elliott, Greenup, Johnson, Lewis, Magoffin, Menifee, Montgomery, Morgan, Powell and Rowan. 

The mission of MSU Talent Search Programs is to assist qualified youth, who have the desire and potential to complete secondary school and attain post -secondary education through academic support, personal enrichment and college and career exploration. The program works with over 1,800 middle and high school students in grades six through 12 within a 12-county area. One of the main objectivities of ETS is that at least 50 percent of seniors served by the program will graduate from college within six years of their senior year of high school. 

Below are some examples of ETS success stories listed by name, high school, college and current occupation:
  • Robert Bowen, Powell County High School, Morehead State University (17), teacher at Powell County Middle School.  
  • Micheala (Wallingford) Bradshaw, Lewis County High School, University of Kentucky, currently in Law School at Northern Kentucky University Chase College of Law.  
  • Haley Campbell, Magoffin County High School, University of Kentucky, currently enrolled at George Washington University in Washington, D.C ., where she is working toward a Master of Science in Public Health Microbiology and Emerging Infectious Diseases.  
  • Carl Craft, Greenup County High School, Berea College, National Public Radio.  
  • Timothy Fannin, Elliott County High School, Ashland Community and Technical College, Atlas Machine.  
  • Shane Flanagan, Rowan County High School, Morehead State University (18).  
  • Caleb Johnson, Bath County High School, Morehead State University (17), assistant men’s basketball coach at Quincy University.  
  • Megan Lane, Menifee County High School, Morehead State University (16), fourth grade teacher at Menifee County K-8. 
  • Jordan Potts, Montgomery County High School, University of Louisville, assistant project manager for Whittenberg Construction.   
  • Tracey Standafer, Morgan County High School, Morehead State University (17), now in her second year at University of Kentucky’s Medical School.  
Anyone who has completed five years of elementary education or is at least 11 years of age and demonstrates potential for success in education at the postsecondary level can apply for ETS. We offer an array of services to help our students achieve their educational goals: 
  • Educational counseling: critical thinking exercises, financial literacy, learning skills exploration, needs assessments, study skills inventory, secondary and post-secondary orientation, test taking strategies and ACT preparation.  
  • Personal counseling: personal inventories, anger management, goal setting, social skills enhancement, stress management, values clarification, one-on-one academic guidance and tutoring.  
  • Career counseling: career interest inventory, business and industry tours, college campus visits, career exploration planning activities, mock interviews and mentoring.  
  • Financial aid counseling: scholarship information, how to get a job, budget management, assistance with post-secondary admission, assistance with financial aid search and completion of FAFSA application.  
  • Technology activities: financial aid and scholarship inquiries and KEES inquiries. Additional Activities: cultural and academic field trips and free ACT fee waivers.  
  • Tutoring: Morehead State University Talent Search offers reading tutoring for 8th grade talent search participants in designated schools in the talent search service region. Reading tutoring sessions will be 30-40 minutes weekly for 6-7 months. Talent search students will be offered homework assistance and individual academic advising.  
  • Mentoring: Morehead State University Talent search conducts a summer mentoring program for graduating seniors. The summer intervention will consist of texting all graduating seniors periodically during the summer to inform and remind them about starting college in the fall.  
 For more information about Talent Search at Morehead State University, visit or call 606-783-9023.