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TRIO Upward Bound at Finlandia University awarded grant to help low-income, potential first generation students access higher education

June 6, 2022

TRIO Upward Bound


Grant will provide TRIO Upward Bound with five years of funding to help a minimum of 84 students from 8 schools in the Copper Country Intermediate School District to find their path to college.

The U.S. Department of Education announced that the TRIO Upward Bound program at Finlandia University will receive a federal grant to help more low-income students, who would be the first members of their families to earn a bachelor’s degree, to prepare for and enroll in college. Hosted by Finlandia University for over 35 years, TRIO Upward Bound has helped hundreds of students achieve their dream of obtaining a college degree.

“My staff and I would like to thank all of the schools, agencies, institutions, and organizations in the communities that we serve. We look forward to continuing our partnership to ensure our students have the skills and opportunities to succeed in school, college, and beyond,” said David Kamrad, director of TRIO Pre-College Programs at Finlandia University.

As one of the Federal TRIO Programs, Upward Bound identifies and assists high school students who have the potential to succeed in higher education. At least two-thirds of the students in each Upward Bound program are from low-income economic backgrounds and families in which neither parent has a bachelor’s degree. Upward Bound provides these students with advising, counseling, information about college admissions requirements, scholarships and various student financial aid programs so they may better understand their educational opportunities and options. According to the U.S. Department of Education, 84 percent of Upward Bound participants enroll in postsecondary institutions immediately following high school graduation. In FY21, more than 70,000 students enrolled in 966 Upward Bound TRIO projects in the U.S. 

Since its founding, many Upward Bound alumni have had great success, including former U.S. Congressman Henry Bonilla from Texas, award-winning actress Viola Davis and author philanthropist Oprah Winfrey.

Upward Bound began in 1964 as part of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty. It was the first of eight federal “TRIO” programs authorized by the Higher Education Act to help college students succeed in higher education. TRIO recognizes that students whose parents do not have a college degree have more difficulties navigating the complexity of decisions that college requires for success. Thus, it bolsters students from low-income families who have not had the academic opportunities their college peers have had and helps remove obstacles preventing students from thriving academically.

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