San Francisco Bay Area

Our Work

uAspire’s work is laser-focused on removing the financial barriers to both college access and success.

To achieve this, uAspire embeds our expertly trained College Affordability Advisors in high schools and community organizations, where they support students one-on-one in navigating the complex financial aid system so they have the information and resources they need to make an informed choice about where to go to college and have a plan for how to pay for it.

In the Bay Area, we are currently serving 2,245 12th grade students in high-need communities in San Francisco, Oakland, and Hayward.

Over the summer, uAspire continues to support our graduating high school seniors via summertime text-messaged advising. We send a series of coordinated text messages that remind each student of his/her college’s upcoming requirements and deadlines related to enrolling in college. Check out the video below to learn more.

Need For Our Services

How to pay for college is one of the largest and most consequential financial decisions a person will ever make. The real and perceived costs of college are routinely noted as key barriers to college access and success—especially among students from low-income backgrounds or who will be in the first generation of their family to attend college.

uAspire’s services are crucial in helping young people pursue and complete an affordable college education. Working in partnership with guidance counselors and other practitioners who often lack the training and/or capacity to focus on affordability issues, uAspire fills a critical gap in college access and success programming. Read more…

Our Students

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uAspire Bay Area’s services are available to any 12th grade student in our partner schools and community programs. Regardless of a student’s background, we strive to meet that student where they are in the college access process and provide the one-on-one support they need to achieve their dreams of a higher education.

In order to achieve the greatest impact, we partner with schools and community-based organizations that predominantly serve students from low-income backgrounds or that will be in the first generation of their family to graduate from college.

See a full list of our partner sites here.

History and Vision For Our Future

A national nonprofit headquartered in Boston, uAspire came to the Bay Area in 2014 thanks to a seed investment from the GreenLight Fund, a venture philanthropy firm that identifies service gaps for children, youth, and families in high-need areas and imports proven models to address those needs. GreenLight Fund identified college persistence supports as a critical service gap in the region and, after vetting 80 organizations, selected uAspire as an organization best poised to address that need.

We opened our doors to Bay Area youth in January 2014 and commenced our first full year of services in August of that year.

Through our first two years in the Bay Area, uAspire has helped more than 2,000 students plan for and find an affordable path to college. By 2017, uAspire will expand the breadth and depth of our services to reach more than 5,000 high school and postsecondary students annually in communities throughout the Bay Area.

Learn More

Read about our growth philosophy and our plans to deepen services and expand to high-need areas in our impact here.

Follow us on Twitter and Facebookwhere we share news and tools that can help all students, families, schools, and community-based organizations navigate the complex process of financing college.

Sign up for the uAspire Bay Area newsletter list here to receive updates on our local work!