U.S. Department of Education awards $1.4 million to college’s Upward Bound program

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The U.S. Department of Education awarded $866,403 to the college’s Upward Bound program. Additional funding in the amount of $575,072 is expected in 2020-2021. 

Upward Bound is a pre-college program designed to prepare high school students from low-income families, and families where neither parent has completed a four-year degree, for college access and success. The initiative offers a wide range of activities including mentoring, advising, academic instruction, career exploration and assistance with college and financial aid applications. 

Sandra Gonzales
Sandra Gonzales

The college’s program specifically targets students in Southwest Detroit who attend César Chávez Academy High School and Western International High School. Students and their families receive comprehensive, wrap-around services, including afterschool tutoring, skill-building workshops, academic advising, family support, college and career assistance, standardized test preparation, a six-week academic summer experience, professional internships, cultural and personal enrichment through field trips, college campus tours, and leadership conferences. 

Sandra Gonzales, Ed.D., associate professor of bilingual/bicultural education and principal investigator for the grant, explained that — unlike other afterschool or enrichment activities — Upward Bound is designed to nurture a small group of students for a long period of time. It is more than a college access initiative.  

“We are like an extended family network,” said Gonzales. “We travel with students on in-state and out-of-state college campus tours; connect them with career professionals for internships and work-study opportunities; plan service activities; celebrate their accomplishments; and, engage with families at home, at school, on campus or wherever needed. We are here to give our students and families the academic and socioemotional boost they need to persist and succeed.” 

For more information about the College of Education’s Upward Bound program, visit coe.wayne.edu/coe_upward_bound/index.php 

This project received 100% of its funding from the United States Department of Education (grant #P047A171342-18) totaling $1,441,475.