HAMMOND — Purdue University Northwest is receiving $5.9 million from the federal government to support programs for low-income students and students from underrepresented backgrounds over the next five years, the university announced in a press release.
That money will go toward three programs at the university: Upward Bound, Upward Bound Math and Science, and Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement. They are among six TRIO programs — initiatives administered by the U.S. Department of Education — at PNW aimed at created opportunities for low-income students and students from underrepresented backgrounds.
Upward Bound and Upward Bound Math and Science offer high school students from Gary, East Chicago and Hammond the opportunity to participate in workshops and seminars meant to prepare them for college. Upward Bound Math and Science is new at PNW; its first students are set to begin in January. The original Upward Bound has been operating at PNW with the help of federal funding since 1966, when the university was called Purdue Calumet.
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The Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program assists first-generation, low-income and underrepresented college students who wish to attend graduate school after receiving a bachelor's degree. These and PNW's other educational opportunity programs serve more than 2,000 students annually, according to the university. It has been operating at PNW since 1989.
"I'm very excited that we have an opportunity to continue to serve students at PNW and in the community who identify as being a first-generation, income-eligible college student or a student with disabilities," said Ronnell DuBose, director of Upward Bound Math and Science programs at PNW.
"Providing them college access and success is important, but we're also making sure that not only do they get to college, but they also are able to succeed and graduate with the highest GPAs possible and get into good career fields. Understanding that this is a need for our community, being able to be refunded as the Outward Bound program and as the McNair program is a really, really awesome opportunity for not just PNW but for Northwest Indiana as well."