GEAR UP – which stands for Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs – is a federally-funded program that works to address systemic barriers to postsecondary success and career options for students and families. Through a competitive process, awardees receive six- or seven-year grants to provide services designed to meet this challenge.
GEAR UP 4 LA earned its first federal grant in 2011, followed by a second grant in 2014, third and fourth grants in 2018, and the fifth grant in 2020 – with total financial power in aggregate of $110.6 million.
Our work has a direct impact! Higher levels of participation in GU4LA services such as counseling, college visits, and workshops were consistently associated with higher college enrollment.GEAR UP 4 LA
Following a cohort model, we work with the same groups of students starting in sixth grade, guiding them through middle and high school, and providing them support in the first year of their postsecondary journeys.
In partnership with a variety of community-based organizations, businesses, and institutions of higher education, our team of dedicated coordinators, counselors, advisors, and family engagement staff provides GU4LA students with academic counseling, financial aid education, mentoring, college visits, exposure to careers, and social-emotional support.
As a result, students who stay in the program longer have higher rates of college enrollment and graduate from high school with more knowledge about their postsecondary options.