Senators Collins, King Announce More Than $2.1 Million for Maine Upward Bound Programs

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King announced today that four Maine universities and colleges will receive a total of $2,161,002 through the U.S. Department of Education’s Upward Bound Program.  Upward Bound helps low-income, first-generation, and other students from disadvantaged backgrounds pursue higher education.

“Upward Bound and other TRIO programs are vital for students across our state, where we have a large number of first-generation college students,” said Senators Collins and King in a joint statement.  “This funding will help hundreds of students from disadvantaged backgrounds obtain a college education and unlock their full potential.”

The awards will be distributed as follows:

  • $296,516 for an Upward Bound program proposed by the University of Southern Maine to serve 64 low-income, first-generation students per year in Massabesic, Sacopee Valley and Westbrook High Schools;
  • $270,375 for an Upward Bound program proposed by the University of Southern Maine to serve 63 low-income, first-generation students per year in Biddeford and Sanford High Schools;
  • $257,500 for an Upward Bound program proposed by the University of Maine at Farmington to serve 60 students in the River Valley;
  • $364,060 for an Upward Bound program proposed by the University of Maine at Farmington to serve eight area high schools;
  • $257,500 for an Upward Bound program proposed by the University of Maine System acting through the University of Maine to serve sixty students in two counties;
  • $257,500 for an Upward Bound program proposed by Bowdoin College to serve 60 students in the Midcoast and Downeast regions; and
  • $457,551 for an Upward Bound program proposed by Bowdoin College to serve students in the Midcoast and Downeast regions.

Following a months’ long bipartisan push from the Maine Delegation, the U.S. Department of Education agreed to review an Upward Bound Grant application submitted by the University of Maine at Presque Isle (UMPI) that was previously rejected due to minor formatting issues. UMPI’s application for the Upward Bound program was one of dozens of TRIO grant applications that were rejected earlier this year due to arbitrary formatting requirements issued by the previous administration. In UMPI’s case, the issue was with two infographics on the 65-page application that had 1.5 line spacing rather than double line spacing.