UAA awarded $2.5 million in federal TRIO Upward Bound grants

Feb. 8, 2018

The University of Alaska Anchorage has secured more than $2.5 million in federal funds through the U.S. Department of Education’s TRIO Upward Bound program to help Anchorage high school students become college ready.

The grants, disbursed over a five-year period, will cover staffing and programming costs for UAA to serve 120 students in the Anchorage School District. Bartlett and West high schools will each have an advisor overseeing a cohort of 60 students in grades 9–12. The program will provide academic and personal advising, tutoring, financial guidance and other support necessary to promote college access, retention and graduation.

“Our partnership with the Anchorage School District is critical to student success,” said Theresa Lyons, executive director of student outreach and transition. “Many high school students have yet to visualize themselves attending college. We will work collaboratively to help students consider the possibility of college now, and guide their preparation to ensure a successful transition to college following their graduation from high school.”

TRIO Upward Bound serves high school students from low-income families, as well as first-generation college students. The program aims to increase the rate at which students complete high school and go on to attend college and earn a degree. Upward Bound helps students navigate admissions and enrollment processes, understand and secure financial aid and access campus resources. The program also plays a critical role in helping first-generation college students address unique challenges that arise from being the first in their families to pursue and complete a college degree.

Upward Bound is one of eight federal TRIO programs designed to reduce barriers to higher education. With the expansion of Upward Bound in Alaska, UAA will now be one of more than 1,000 colleges and universities nationwide working to address the need for increased support for these students.

UAA staff members are currently recruiting students for the program. For more information, contact Kaitlin DeMarcus, Upward Bound director, at 907-786-4829 or email Visit to learn more about the Upward Bound program.

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