*The following is a brief description for students. Institutions should refer to the most recent guidelines for information.
GEAR UP is a national effort to encourage more young people to have high expectations, stay in school, study hard and go to college. Through the Board of Higher Education, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts received a GEAR UP State Grant to provide early college awareness activities, improved academic support, information on paying for college and the GEAR UP Scholarship for students who participated in a component of the GEAR UP Massachusetts Early Intervention initiative.
An undergraduate student who has been admitted to an eligible institution and meets the following requirements:
An eligible institution is defined as a state-approved public, private, independent, for profit or non-profit institution in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts authorized to offer undergraduate degrees, certificates or diploma programs and that is also approved by the U.S. Department of Education to administer Title IV programs. Massachusetts state-approved public, private, independent and non-profit institutions located in states (VT, PA and the District of Columbia) that have reciprocity agreements with the Commonwealth and award associate’s and bachelor’s degrees are also eligible to participate.
The maximum amount of the GEAR UP scholarship for each academic year should be no less than minimum Pell (for example this year, 2018-19, awards will likely be at a maximum of $620 for the year).
Students who participated in the GEAR UP Massachusetts program while in high school and complete a current academic year Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as Massachusetts residents automatically receive consideration for a GEAR UP scholarship. The DHE’s Office of Student Financial Assistance requires the post-secondary institution that the student attends to report financial aid information to the program that allows for determination of the student’s eligibility for a GEAR UP scholarship.
For more information, visit the GEAR UP Website or contact the DHE’s Office of Student Financial Assistance at (617) 391-6070.