Upward Bound Math Science receives funding

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 1, 1970

Southeast Kentucky Community & Technical College (SKCTC) has announced that Upward Bound Math Science has been funded by the U.S. Department of Education for $1,319,690 over the next five years. According to director Amanda Creech, this funding will allow the project, which has been in effect since 2012, to continue serving 60 students each year from Harlan County and Bell County high schools.

Upward Bound Math Science participants receive counseling and career advising in STEM-related fields — science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Creech says that advisors visit the schools monthly to meet with students and help with choosing high school courses and other related issues.

Students visit Southeast campuses for ACT preparation workshops, hoping to increase their scores as well as the likelihood of scholarship offers. During their senior years, students take two one-credit hour college classes.

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Each summer, the program holds a residential camp for six weeks with slots for the top 45 students. Participants take STEM-related sciences from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. They also take a cultural enrichment trip to New York, Washington, D.C., and similar destinations. Creech describes the Cocoa Beach and Kennedy Space Center trip as “rewarding.” She explains, “It was the first time the majority of our students had ever seen the ocean. Also, the students loved our tour of the Kennedy Space Center, seeing these huge rockets and space crafts.”

To qualify for Upward Bound Math Science, students must be from low-income families and/or first generation college students at the time of enrollment. They must have a GPA of at least 2.5, and they must submit an essay explaining how the program would benefit them. They also undergo a personal interview.

Creech says that her job is beyond rewarding: “I look forward to every single school visit, helping these kids, especially when they become juniors and seniors asking for advice. We love to see graduates when they visit during summer camps talking about their first semester away from home.”

For more information on Upward Bound Math Science, contact Amanda Creech at 606-589-3115.