Manning High School academic opportunity with Upward Bound grant

by | February 10, 2018 9:19 am

Last Updated: February 14, 2018 at 3:23 pm

Upward Bound Grant Program at USC Sumter

By: Cindy Risher

 

Lisa Rosdail has been working for a TRiO grant program for 17 years. When TRiO was coined there were three programs that fell under the TRiO umbrella but this has since expanded to 8 programs. The TRiO grants are from the Department of Education, making them federal grants. Upward Bound is a five-year grant program and it serves high school students. Rosdail is the Program Director for an Upward Bound grant between USC Sumter and Manning High School that includes students in grades 9-12. Her administrative assistant is Jodi Robbins and Rosdail is in the process of hiring the rest of the staff including a program coordinator and a program advisor. According to Rosdail, “the goal (of the grant) is to take disadvantaged students, give them academic help, tutoring, advice, counseling, mentoring, personal skills development from basic etiquette to understanding financial aid, and get these students ready for (success in) college.” Rosdail has funding available for 60 students across the 4 grade levels but there are certain requirements that must be met to be considered for the program. What the government considers a disadvantaged student is someone that is first generation. This translates to the student’s parents or guardians do not have a 4-year college degree. They can have a 2-year degree or a certificate or specific training, just not a 4-year degree. Of the students in the Sumter, Clarendon, Kershaw, Williamsburg and Florence county area that attend USC Sumter, approximately 75% of these students are first generation students. The second requirement is to be of low income or income eligible based on taxable income and the amount of people living in the household. Low income refers to someone who doesn’t make more than 150% of the poverty level as determined by the federal government. The third requirement is program candidates have to be at a high risk for failure. This means a GPA at or less than 2.5 or if they have not met standard requirements on math or English on state assessments, as documented in their academic records. A very large percentage of Manning High School students qualify for the program. Qualifying students must commit to other program requirements in order to be considered for the final cut for the program. They are expected to meet one Saturday a month for workshops, skill development, campus tours, or touring local spots. They must also agree to attend a 6-week academic program in the summer on campus for the purpose of preparing for their next school year’s academic program. As an example, a student who accepts a freshman spot will have to commit to 4 six-week summer academic camps and four years of once a month on a Saturday. Students and parents have to be committed to be accepted into the program. Currently there are over 200 applications out for the 60 slots. The final 60 candidates must be eligible and committed. As a bonus to students, some of the summer trips planned include Washington, D.C., New York, and Atlanta. For more information contact Program Director Lisa Rosdail at (803) 938-3794

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