NYGEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) is a federal initiative designed to increase the number of students who are prepared to enter and excel in postsecondary education.
In September 2014, New York State was awarded a $22.4 million multi-year NYGEAR UP grant by the U.S. Department of Education to significantly increase the number of low-income New York State secondary school students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education or training.
The New York State Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC) administers the grant NYGEAR UP in New York State, awarding NYGEAR UP sub-grants to qualified sub-grantees statewide through a competitive request for proposal process.
NYGEAR UP sub-grantees work with a cohort of students enrolled in middle schools that “feed” into high schools in which 60 percent or fewer students graduate on time, starting in the 7th grade and continuing through 12th grade.
NYGEAR UP is designed to:
- Increase the academic performance and preparation for postsecondary education of participating students, with an emphasis on career readiness and college fit;
- Increase the rate of high school graduation, with an emphasis on college and career readiness;
- Increase participation in postsecondary education of participating students with an emphasis on college fit and alignment with high-demand fields and sectors of the economy;
- Increase participation in postsecondary education of participating students without need for remedial coursework;
- Increase the rate of college persistence and completion of participating students; and
- Increase student and family knowledge of postsecondary education options, preparation and financing.