The S.C. Johnson Fund has awarded a four-year grant of $240,000 ($60,000 per year) to the Opportunities Industrialization Center (OIC) of Racine County to provide local support for the Upward Bound Program. The U.S. Department of Education also supports the program with a four-year, $1 million federal grant.
Upward Bound supports high school students from low-income families and families in which neither parent holds a bachelor’s degree. The goal is to increase the rate at which these students complete high school and enroll in and graduate from institutions of post-secondary education. Sixty students are enrolled in the program, with 35 of them participating in a six-week residential summer academic enrichment program at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. Their summer will wrap up with one-week trip to Georgia to visit four college campuses and visit CNN studios and the Coca-Cola facilities in Atlanta.
The OIC program provides academic instruction in math, reading, writing and study skills all year 'round. It also provides financial and personal counseling, tutorial services, mentoring, assistance in preparing for college entrance exams and guidance in post-secondary educational opportunities.
Claudius Adebayo, executive director of OIC, said, “I have always believed in the extra-ordinary powers of good education to lessen or even eradicate the devastation of poverty. I experienced it in Africa but it still has to be constantly preached in this country. What S.C. Johnson Fund is doing is making the dream a reality for many low-income families in Racine to break that vicious cycle and get out of poverty. I can never thank them enough for that.”
For more information about Upward Bound, contact OIC of Racine County at (262) 636-3818.