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What is GEAR UP?

What is GEAR UP? (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs)

The Ferris State University GEAR UP/College Day Program targets Baldwin Community Schools, Big Rapids Public Schools, Morley-Stanwood Public Schools, Muskegon Public Schools and Muskegon Heights Public Schools to offer students the academic skills, information and encouragement they need to not only graduate from high school, but apply and attend an institution of higher education.

We begin working with these students in their 7th grade year and follow them through the Fall semester of their 1st year of college. Through this program's goals, our students will not only succeed in and outside the classroom, but will gain the skills necessary to be a graduate from an institution of higher education. GEAR UP is funded nationally by the U.S. Department of Education, by the State of Michigan's Department of Labor and Economic Growth, and locally by its project partners. GEAR UP facilitates student tutoring and mentoring, offers workshops for college preparation and financial aid, and assists schools and teachers to better prepare students for college studies.

  • Financial Preparation: GEAR UP helps students and their parents to apply for tuition assistance and compete for valuable scholarships. GEAR UP offers campus trips to all publicly funded higher education institutions including: Ferris State University, Grand Valley State University, Central Michigan University, Michigan State University, University of Michigan, etc. Students will participate in ceremonies for academic achievement, summer workshops and camps which focus on making students educational goals attainable.
  • Academic Readiness: GEAR UP helps students strengthen their knowledge for college level courses by providing academic advising, mentoring, and hands-on experience with college professors. Additionally, students will be prepared for college entrance exams; and, the GEAR UP/College Day team will provide opportunities for enhanced teacher trainings at our GEAR UP sites.

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