The Reset and Reimagine (known as R2) GEAR UP Lufkin grant announced their participation in National GEAR UP Week 2023. This week commemorates the continuing success of Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP), a college access program providing students and families the support and resources they need for college success.

Since its inception in 1999, GEAR UP has improved educational outcomes for millions of low-income, minority and disadvantaged students across the United States, including the nearly 1,000 students currently served by the R2 GEAR UP Lufkin grant.

R2 GEAR UP Lufkin will celebrate National GEAR UP Week 2023 by hosting a College and Career Night Thursday night from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Lufkin Middle School where students can learn about different types of postsecondary institutions, hear from employers in different career fields, and parents can learn more about the types of Financial Aid and how to start saving for college.

The week will end with students showing their appreciation to teachers and the GEAR UP Coordinators hosting “GEAR UP & GO”, a come-and-go breakfast for cohort parents to meet.

Students like Martin Cruz-Silva, an 8th grader, have been able to participate in GEAR UP experiences such as college tours to the University of Houston and Rice University, summer STEM camp, and a summer Mobile App Development camp while being in the cohort.

Sandra Kirkpatrick, mother to a current 8th grader, had this to say about GEAR UP,

“Since this program has started, I have seen tutorial programs for additional help with classes and PSAT, summer camps geared to challenge and inspire the students’ minds, meetings about college and how to prepare financially, emotionally and academically, college tours and so much more. My family is so pleased to have this program become a part of the school and can't wait to see what the future holds for our children.”

To learn more about the national GEAR UP program, please contact the National Council for Community and Education Partnerships at 202-530-1135 or

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