The Nickel & Nail

The Nickel and Nail

illustration of nickel & nailIn November 1971, the Executive Committee of the California Community College EOPS Association (CCCEOPSA) adopted the Nickel and Nail as the symbol of aid offered to various California community college students through EOPS.

How did a nickel and nail come to represent a successful effort at helping provide the motivation and means to thousands of young people with thousands of different needs?

The story goes that a young man some years back in the Deep South was walking down a dusty road to visit a lady friend, all too aware that the nickel in his pocket was all he had to the world. That emptiness tore away at his self-esteem.

But, as he walked, he noticed two gnarled horseshoe nails that were twisted together and lying by the road. He picked them up and put them in his pocket, and as the metal jingled against his meager fortune, the young man walked a little straighter, with a little more pride and dignity.

It is important to have "something to jingle." EOPS works to enhance self-esteem, foster pride and dignity, and motivate people to effectively define and pursue career goals.

The nails twisted into a puzzle, suggesting the problem has yet to be unraveled for helping people who, by circumstances of the society in which we live, have been limited in meeting their own educational challenges.


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Christine Rincon
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Last Modified Dec 10, 2014