College News

CCCC receives federal Upward Bound grants

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09.15.2022College & CommunityCollege General

SANFORD - The U.S. Department of Education has announced that Central Carolina Community College will receive three federal Upward Bound grants totaling $4.4 million dollars to help more low-income students who would be the first members of their families to earn degrees to prepare for and enroll in college.

These awards extend the Upward Bound programs at CCCC, which have served students in Lee and Harnett Counties since 2012, through 2027. During the last 10 years, Upward Bound has supported over 1,000 students' completion of their secondary education and assisted their matriculation to various colleges and universities.

One of the federal TRiO Programs, Upward Bound is an intensive intervention program that prepares students for higher education through various enrichment courses. At least two-thirds of the students in each local Upward Bound program are from low-income economic backgrounds and families in which neither parent has a bachelor's degree.

"Upward Bound is about helping students become what their socio-economic circumstances say they can't," says Kevin Pearson, CCCC Director of TRiO Upward Bound programs.

Campus-based Upward Bound programs provide students instruction in literature, composition, mathematics, science, and foreign language during the school year and the summer. Upward Bound also provides intensive mentoring and support for students as they prepare for college entrance exams and tackle admission applications, financial aid, and scholarship forms.

According to the U.S. Department of Education, 86 percent of Upward Bound participants enroll in postsecondary institutions immediately following high school graduation.

In 1964, the Economic Opportunity Act established Upward Bound as a pilot program in response to the War on Poverty. It was the first of seven federal "TRiO" programs to later be authorized by the Higher Education Act to help college students succeed in higher education. It recognizes that students whose parents do not have a college degree have more difficulties navigating the complexity of decisions that college requires for success, bolsters students from low-income families who have not had the academic opportunities that their college peers have had, and helps remove obstacles preventing students from thriving academically.

As of 2021, over 3,000 TRiO projects serve approximately 855,000 participants yearly. TRiO projects are in every state and territory in the nation.

Learn more about CCCC's TRiO Upward Bound programs at

For more information on Central Carolina Community College - which is dedicated to providing pathways to achievable dreams, visit