$108,000 Awarded to Maryland Education Institutions to Help Local Youth Prepare for College

Baltimore, MD – (November 28, 2018) – The Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) Secretary, Dr. James. D. Fielder, announced that more than $108,000 was awarded to two Maryland higher education institutions for skills-development programs, helping low-income youth prepare for college.


In conjunction with the federally funded Maryland Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Program (GEAR UP), the Workforce and Employability Skills Program (WESP) awards will benefit low-income students by offering programs in career exploration, educational planning, and job skills.   Both Johns Hopkins University and Wor-Wic Community College will use these funds to create programs that will expose local students to in-school workshops that focus on communication, collaboration, teamwork, self-advocacy, as well as job exploration, experiential learning, and workplace readiness training.


“These dollars are an investment in our future,” Secretary Fielder said. “Both Johns Hopkins University and Wor-Wic Community College will have an incredible opportunity to work with these students, who otherwise may not have even entertained the idea of college. This program will give students the confidence and the skill-sets necessary to succeed in their higher education goals.”


Maryland two-and four-year institutions were eligible to apply and partner with Local Education Authorities (LEAs) for the grant. The following two institutions were awarded for the 2019 funding cycle:

·         Johns Hopkins University - $80,000

·         Wor-Wic Community College - $28,372

This is a six-year federal grant program (2014-2020), sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education.


The Maryland GEAR UP program instills knowledge and delivers services to ensure that low-income and underrepresented students are college and career ready. It is a rigorous academic program of studies to develop the instrumental skills needed to apply/enroll in college, obtain financial aid, and complete postsecondary education. The program is focused on two core academic areas, English/Language Arts (ELA) and mathematics. Maryland GEAR UP districts include Baltimore City, Dorchester, and Wicomico counties.​