CASTLETON—Castleton University recently received word from the office of Senator Patrick Leahy that its TRiO Upward Bound program has been funded for five more years, according to a May 26 news release. The grant will serve 63 high school students in Rutland County attending the target schools of Fair Haven Union High School, Mill River Union High School, Poultney High School, Rutland Senior High School and West Rutland High School.
Castleton University has successfully managed a U.S. Department of Education TRiO Upward Bound program since 2003. While the grant process was competitive, Castleton Upward Bound received additional points for exceeding its objectives in the areas of grade point average, standardized tests, secondary school retention and graduation, and postsecondary enrollment and graduation in the previous grant cycle — a testament to Castleton University’s institution-wide commitment to excellence in educational opportunity.
Upward Bound is a federally funded TRiO program at Castleton that offers challenging pre-college experiences to students of high school academic ability from low-income families. The goal of the program is to generate the skills and motivation necessary for success in high school and college through a six-week semester residential program and an academic year component.
TRiO was established by the Higher Education Act of 1965 to assist low-income individuals and/or first-generation college students and students with disabilities to earn baccalaureate degrees. Castleton Upward Bound, a TRiO program adopted by then Castleton College in 2003, has served more than 200 local high school students. Since its inception 75 percent of Castleton Upward Bound students have enrolled in college immediately following high school graduation, compared to just 35 percent of low-income Vermont high school graduates.