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Boston – The United States Department of Education recently awarded Boston University one of only 110 national Upward Bound Math Science grants. BU’s proposal scored among the top ten percent and the program will be funded $1.25 million over five years. Led jointly by representatives from the School of Education and the College of Arts and Sciences, Upward Bound Math Science will serve 50 students from grades 9-12, recruited from Brighton High School, Charlestown High School and Chelsea High School.
Upward Bound and Upward Bound Math Science are part of the federally funded TRIO programs, whose purpose is to prepare low-income and first-generation college bound students for success in higher education. While the “classic” Upward Bound program focuses on general preparation for college, the goal of new Upward Bound Math Science is to help students recognize and develop their potential to excel in math and science and to encourage them to pursue post-secondary degrees in those subjects.
To accomplish this, the program will provide students with hands-on and exploratory science activities, as well as opportunities to work in research labs and to learn about careers in science. This model represents a new level of integration with academic researchers at BU and offers expanded opportunities for program participants to prepare in greater depth for study in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) at the post-secondary level. Upward Bound Mass Science will also continue to build upon the past success of the university’s collaboration between the GK-12 initiative, which provides qualified science-focused CAS graduate students with teaching fellowships in local high schools and “classic” Upward Bound programs. Combined, the two programs will serve a total of 125 students and provide the opportunity to create a pipeline of students who choose to enter STEM fields.
Ruth Shane, Director of the Boston University/Boston Public Schools Collaborative Office in the School of Education, and Bennett Goldberg, Chair of the Physics Department in the College of Arts and Sciences, are co-principle investigators. The grant will complement the university’s existing Upward Bound program directed by Michael Dennehy and leverage programs organized by Boston University’s Learning Resource Network (LERNet), which is overseen by Cynthia Brossman.
Program services will include after-school tutoring, test preparation, college counseling, and Science Saturdays during the academic year, as well as an intensive six-week academic summer residential program during the summer. All services will be based on Boston University’s campus.
Founded in 1839, Boston University is an internationally recognized institution of higher education and research. With more than 30,000 students, it is the fourth largest independent university in the United States. BU consists of 17 colleges and schools along with a number of multi-disciplinary centers and institutes which are central to the school’s research and teaching mission.