The Davis & Elkins College Veterans Upward Bound program has been selected to receive funding from the U.S. Department of Education.
The grant provides $355,500 annually and will allow the program to continue for the next five years. The VUB program, which is 100 percent funded by the Department of Education, is a federal program dedicated to assisting veterans of the U.S. military prepare for and succeed in postsecondary education. It has been hosted at D&E since 1990.
The college's VUB program offers refresher and preparatory classes in English, math, science, foreign language and computer skills at several locations. The classes are designed to prepare veterans for the academic rigors of postsecondary education. In addition to offering classes, program staff members assist veterans in securing financial aid; making use of their GI Bill benefits; and applying to and enrolling in postsecondary schools.
D&E's VUB program is the only one in West Virginia. The program is one of only 43 programs nationwide, and it was selected from more than 300 applicants. The program serves veterans from throughout the state and offers its comprehensive services at various locations statewide, including the D&E campus.
The new five-year grant will allow VUB to serve 158 veterans each year, an increase of 32 percent from previous years.
Director Mark Rosencrance said the program has been tasked with serving more people with no additional funds from previous years.
"Essentially, we have to do more with less, and be more efficient, while maintaining the quality of the services we offer," Rosencrance said.
"We understand the importance of offering a comfortable learning environment," he added. "Many of our participants haven't been in the classroom for five, 10 or 20 years. They often need to ease back into the academic environment. Our classes offer the ideal transition from service to classroom."
More information about the Veterans Upward Bound program is available at 304-637-1257.