GAPS Partners

Council for Opportunity in Education (COE)

The Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) is a nonprofit organization whose membership includes more than 1,100 colleges and community-based organizations with a particular commitment to expanding college opportunity. COE, which was incorporated in 1981, is the only national organization with affiliates in all 50 states, the Caribbean, and Pacific Islands focused on assuring that low-income students and first generation students have a realistic chance to prepare for, enter, and graduate from college.

European Students’ Union (ESU)

The European Students’ Union (ESU) is the umbrella organisation of 45 National Unions of Students (NUS) from 38 countries. The NUSes are open to all students in their respective country regardless of political persuasion, religion, ethnic or cultural origin, sexual orientation or social standing. Our members are also student-run, autonomous, representative and operate according to democratic principles. The aim of ESU is to represent and promote the educational, social, economic and cultural interests of students at the European level towards all relevant bodies and in particular the European Union, Bologna Follow Up Group, Council of Europe and UNESCO. Through its members, ESU represents over 15 million students in Europe. ESU works to bring together, train and inform national student representatives on policy developments in higher education at the European level. Since decisions concerning higher education are increasingly taken at the European level, ESU’s role as the only European-wide student platform is similarly growing. ESU’s work centres around supporting its members through organising seminars, training, campaigns and conferences relevant to students, conducting European-wide research, partnership projects and campaigns, providing information services and producing a variety of publications. for both students, policy-makers and higher education professionals.

International Association of Universities (IAU)

Founded in 1950, under the auspices of UNESCO, the International Association of Universities (IAU) is the leading global association of HEIs and organisations from around the world. IAU brings together its universities, other HEIs and their associations, from more than 130 countries for reflection and action on common priorities.

IAU is an independent, bilingual (English and French) NGO offering various services and support to its Members. It acts as the voice of higher education (HE) to UNESCO and provides a global forum for HE leaders to discuss, reflect, and take action on issues of shared interest.

IAU upholds the values of academic freedom and institutional autonomy, while promoting greater accountability. It promotes institutional effectiveness, and the ideal of knowledge made accessible to all through collaboration and improved access to higher education.

Lumina Foundation

Lumina Foundation is an independent, private foundation committed to increasing the proportion of Americans with high-quality degrees, certificates and other credentials to 60 percent by 2025. Lumina’s outcomes-based approach focuses on helping to design and build an accessible, responsive and accountable higher education system while fostering a national sense of urgency for action to achieve Goal 2025.


ECHO works to develop diversity policy in higher education and the labour market. To achieve this, ECHO develops and implements strategies in order to improve the matriculation and retention possibilities of ethnic minorities. From the acquired expertise around the participation of ethnic minorities in higher education, ECHO positions itself by focussing on new opportunities for development. ECHO provides policy advice and training to manage the end-to-end process in relation to diversity policy together with our clients. Furthermore ECHO challenges itself within a continuously changing society to influence the image of ethnic minorities by displaying their talent.