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$1.25 million Upward Bound grant to help DC students become ready for college

$1.25 million Upward Bound grant to help DC students make it to college. (ABC7)

Alaya Barnett, a 16-year-old, wants to achieve what her parents didn't, a college degree.

"I really want to go to college so that in the future I am stable and I can support myself and my family," Barnett told ABC7 News.

To reach that goal, she's reaching for support from the new Upward Bound Program at her school, Friendship Tech Prep Academy in Southeast.

College Prep Advisor KellyAnn Kirkpatrick explained, "We start with 9th, 10th and 11th and our goal is to move them up all the way through the program to college readiness."

College Success Foundation-DC is implementing the college prep program after receiving a $1.25-million Upward Bound grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

"We applied for the grant with the hopes of helping more students in Wards 7 and 8 attend college and be prepared to do so," Kirkpatrick said.

The new program is being offered at Friendship Tech and Cesar Chavez Parkside High in Northeast.

Low income and potential first-generation college students benefit from tutoring, academic and career advice, summer and after-school enrichment programs, SAT preparation, parent workshops, college tours, and help identifying financial aid and scholarships.

The support puts Barnett a step closer to achieving her dreams.

"I want to make sure that I am stable in the career that I want to go to and if that career fails, then I'll have something else to just hop back on because I have a degree," she said.

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