Tester Announces $1.3 Million for Montana Tech’s New Upward Bound Program

Funding Will Go Toward Preparing Butte High School Students for Math and Science Programs in College

(U.S. Senate) – U.S. Senator Jon Tester announced today that Montana Tech will receive over $1.3 million dollars to launch its new Upward Bound Math & Science Program, which will assist low-income Butte High School students prepare for college.

“Upward Bound makes a real difference in the lives of first generation college students, providing a pathway for success and opportunity,” said Tester, a former teacher. “These resources offer students the extra support they need to attend high school, achieve better scores, and ultimately enroll in college.”

The grant comes from the U.S. Department of Education and will allow Montana Tech to help 60 Butte High School students prepare for college each year, with a specific focus on the math and science programs that Montana Tech specializes in. Montana Tech was one of just 47 schools in the country to receive a perfect score on its grant proposal and one of only 22 new programs to receive funding this year.

“This is a particularly personal victory for me,” said Amy Verlanic, Executive Director for the Institute for Educational Opportunities at Montana Tech and author of the grant. “I grew up low income and the first in my family to attend college, so I understand the educational and social challenges that these students face. We’re very grateful to Senator Tester. He fights for Montana kids in D.C. every day and his work has resulted in tangible benefits and opportunities for our students.”

“Montana Tech was recently ranked the #1 college to contribute to the economic mobility of the United States,” said Doug Abbott, Provost and Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs at Montana Tech. “This grant will allow our reach and impact to expand beyond Tech’s undergraduate enrollment and provide Butte students at earlier ages the education needed for social and economic mobility.”

Earlier this year, Tester announced another $1.48 million for Montana Tech’s general Upward Bound Program.

Tester also successfully defended Montana students after Education Secretary Betsy DeVos rejected the University of Montana’s Upward Bound application because one page of its application wasn’t double spaced. Tester not only demanded Devos reverse her decision, he also introduced legislation to force her to reconsider the application. After the increased pressure, Tester announced the University of Montana received its funding.