Through a partnership with Alabama State University (ASU), beginning in 2022 Auburn University will host an annual GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) summer program. The program is designed to significantly increase the number of low-income students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education and is funded by the U.S. Department of Education. By 2027, ASU GEAR UP will provide academic preparation services to over 26,000 students within the Montgomery Public School (MPS) System. The project begins with a 6th and 7th-grade cohort (4,495 students) at all 10 MPS middle schools and provides services to the cohort in all 9 MPS high schools. The program will work with over 12 community partners, including Auburn University, Tuskegee University, Boys and Girls Club of the River Region, the YMCA of Greater Montgomery, and 5 ASU colleges to provide MPS students with services to promote college exploration. ASU-GU plans to prioritize fostering flexible and affordable paths to obtaining knowledge and skills, building capacity for remote learning, and addressing the impact of COVID-19 on students’ mental health, and academic outcomes within MPS.


Auburn University 2022 Program:

  •  Monday, July 18 - Saturday, July 23, 2022
  •  Six-day residential on-campus program for rising 7th and 8th graders
  •  Students will participate in mini-courses in core subject areas (mathematics, science, and English) as well as attend sessions on campus resources.


Project goals:

  •  Increase ASU GEAR UP students’ academic performance and preparation for postsecondary education;
  •  Increase ASU GEAR UP students’ high school graduation rate and participation in postsecondary education;
  •  Increase educational expectations of ASU GEAR UP students and increase student and family knowledge of postsecondary options


Eligible Montgomery Public Schools:

  • Baldwin Arts & Academics
  • Bellingrath Middle 
  • Brewbaker Middle
  • Capitol Heights Middle
  • Carr Middle
  • Dunbar-Ramer
  • Floyd Middle
  • Goodwyn Middle
  • McKee Middle
  • Southlawn Middle