Recently, 11 large research institutions, including MSU, came together across state and conference lines to increase the rate at which students from low-income and underrepresented backgrounds graduate from college. The mission of this new coalition, the University Innovation Alliance, is to increase the number of students who stay in college and graduate within six years, regardless of where they are within the socioeconomic spectrum. Related to this initiative, MSU has an existing program in place – Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) – that helps high school students from low-income and underrepresented backgrounds gain the skills they need to be college-ready.
This week commemorates the continuing success of GEAR UP, a college access program providing students and families the support and resources they need for college success. Since its inception in 1999, GEAR UP has improved educational outcomes for millions of low-income, minority and disadvantaged students across the United States, including 1,473 tenth grade students from the Albion, Detroit, Jackson, and Lansing communities who are currently served by the MSU MI GEAR UP program.
The MSU MI GEAR UP program celebrated National GEAR UP Week 2014 by hosting a program on the steps of the state Capitol in downtown Lansing on Wednesday, September 24, 2014. Those in attendance heard from a few of the students from the MSU MI GEAR UP Program who spoke about how the program has changed their lives; a current MSU student who went through the GEAR UP program; a GEAR UP alumni and Michigan State House Representative Sam Singh, to name a few.
The MSU MI GEAR UP Program offers academic year activities to eligible students that include: Saturday Workshops focused on specific skill development in the areas of financial literacy and financial aid, as well as exposure to careers in science, technology, engineering and math; School Outreach to discuss MSU MI GEAR UP opportunities; Campus Visits with various departments across MSU’s campus and viewing university attractions such as the National Superconducting Cyclotron and the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, as well as other college campuses in the area; Field Trips to historical places such as the Charles Wright Museum and the Underground Railroad station in Detroit; and the MSU MI GEAR UP Summer Program. To date, the MSU MI GEAR UP Program has served 3,597 students.
For more information about the MSU MI GEAR UP Program, please visit their website.
To learn more about the national GEAR UP program, please contact the
National Council for Community and Education Partnerships at
202-530-1135 or visit their website.