You are here

Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP)

Gear Up logo


GEAR UP assists low-income, first-generation and traditionally underrepresented students in obtaining a high school diploma and preparing for and succeeding in postsecondary education.

Blaze a Trail to Postsecondary Success with GEAR UP!!


  • Increase academic performance and preparation for post-secondary enrollment for Wisconsin GEAR UP (WIGU) students
  • Increase high school graduation and enrollment in post-secondary education rates (without the need for remediation) for WIGU students
  • Increase WIGU students’ and families’ knowledge of post-secondary education options, preparation, and financing

Services Provided

  • One-on-one academic, career, or personal advising
  • Close monitoring of grades, attendance, and homework completion and early intervention via tutoring or referrals as needed
  • Instruction and guidance on college and career readiness topics
  • College visits and cultural events
  • Personalized mentoring throughout senior year and first year of college
  • Consideration for GEAR UP Scholarship

Eligibility ​​​

  • Must be enrolled in a GEAR UP target school 

List of Wisconsin GEAR UP Target Schools
School District Middle Schools High Schools

Ashland (Ashland WEOP Office)

Ashland Middle School Ashland High School

Bayfield (Ashland WEOP Office)

Bayfield Middle School Bayfield High School

Green Bay Area Public Schools

(Green Bay WEOP Office)

Edison Middle School East High School
Washington Middle School West High School
Preble High School
Southwest High School

Milwaukee Public Schools

(Milwaukee WEOP Office)

Cass Street Elementary Barack Obama School of Career and Technical Education
Congress Elementary Bradley Tech High School
Thurston Woods Middle School Hamilton High School
Vieau Elementary Milwaukee High School of Arts

King International Baccalaureate Middle School


Riverside University High School
South Division High School
Washington High School Information and Technology

Shawano (Green Bay WEOP Office)

Shawano Community Middle School Shawano Community High School

Sheboygan (Green Bay WEOP Office)

Farnsworth Middle School Central High School
Horace Mann Middle School North High School
Urban Middle School South High School
Warriner Middle School Warriner High School

Racine Unified

(Milwaukee WEOP Office)

Gilmore Middle School Case High School
McKinley Middle School Horlick High School
  Park High School


(Wausau WEOP Office)

Horace Mann Middle School East High School
John Muir Middle School West High School

  • Students must meet ONE of the following criteria listed below –

    • Eligible for free or reduced-price meals at time of GEAR UP enrollment
    • Racial or Ethnic Minority
    • First generation college bound, neither parent/guardian has a 4 year degree
    • English language learner
    • Student with a disability
  • Must be between grades 6 through 12
  • Must be a United States citizen or national, permanent resident of the United States, or be able to provide documentation from U.S. Immigration of their intent to become a permanent resident

How to Complete the WEOP Student Application

Application steps graphic

  1. Complete the WEOP Student Application Form - must be signed by you AND a parent/guardian:

    1. PI-1576 WEOP Student Enrollment Application (English)
    2. PI-1576 WEOP Student Enrollment Application (Hmong)
    3. PI-1576 WEOP Student Enrollment Application (Spanish)
  2. Have a Teacher/Coach/Counselor complete the DPI Teacher Recommendation Form and/or the DPI Counselor Coach Recommendation Form (optional, but highly encouraged).
  3. Submit your application to the secure server through your local WEOP Office:
    1. Ashland WEOP Office
    2. Green Bay WEOP Office
    3. Milwaukee WEOP Office
    4. Wausau WEOP Office
  4. WAIT to receive an upload link from the WEOP Office to send in your completed documents together.

Please contact your local WEOP Office for additional information.

Additional Partner Services Provided by UW - Green Bay

  • Dual credit opportunities for high school students
  • Summer camps for students grades 6-12
  • STEM After-School programs
  • Digital Badges for achievement from UW - Green Bay

Learn more about services provided through the GEAR UP partnership with UW - Green Bay web page.

In 2019, Governor Tony Evers designated the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Wisconsin Educational Opportunity Program (WEOP) as the sole state agency to administer the GEAR UP grant. The GEAR UP grant is funded through the United States Department of Education.