Palm Beach State College has been awarded another five-year $1.35 million federal grant to continue its Upward Bound program that helps steer high school students on the path to higher education.
The college will receive $270,375 a year for the program that serves 65 participants per year from John I. Leonard, Lake Worth and Palm Beach Lakes high schools. Upward Bound is one of the programs funded by the U.S. Department of Education. It targets low-income and first-generation college students. Students enter the program in the ninth or 10th grade and continue until high school graduation. The Upward Bound staff is charged with tracking the success of students for six years after high school graduation.
“I’m very excited that we have another opportunity to roll up our sleeves and serve deserving students by helping them enroll in a college of their choice,’’ said Jim Culver, Upward Bound director. “Palm Beach State College provides an excellent platform for me to continue serving in this capacity.”
Upward Bound includes an academic year and a six-week summer component that offers students tutoring, instruction in English, math, science and foreign language, guest speakers on such topics as time management and test-taking strategies, cultural field trips and college visits. Culver said 75 percent of the participants enroll in a college or university.
Federal programs such as this one are designed to help students overcome class, social and cultural barriers to higher education.
Palm Beach State College first received funding to launch Upward Bound in 1999, and the grant has been renewed four times, twice for four years and twice for five years.
Culver applauded Maureen Capp, the college’s resource and grant development director. “We all have to work together to get it, and we did it,’’ he said.