District Staff

GEAR UP Partners

Partnering with school systems to improve educational pathways and degree attainment in WNC

The Appalachian GEAR UP Partnership grant serves approximately 15,000 students from 10 school districts in the following Western North Carolina counties: Alleghany, Ashe, Burke, Clay, Graham, Madison, Swain, Watauga, Wilkes, and Yancey. Appalachian GEAR UP strives to create capacity in the districts that changes mindsets around college access and college goingness in a sustainable way. The goal is that the impact of Appalachian GEAR UP will be felt in the districts even after the grant has ended. 

*Elementary and Middle Schools served 2021 and beyond.

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Alleghany County Schools

Ashe County Schools

Burke County Schools

Clay County Schools

Graham County Schools

Madison County Schools

Swain County Schools

Watauga County Schools

Wilkes County Schools


Yancey County Schools

 

 

Where We Are

Higher Education Partners

 

Appalachian State University

Partnering school districts and higher eds: All
Primary GEAR UP contact: Dr. Eric Klein
Contact information:

Institutional website: www.appstate.edu

Tri-County Community College

Partnering school district(s): Clay County Schools

Primary GEAR UP contact: Silas Shields
Contact information:

  • 828.835.4248
  • sshields@tricountycc.edu

Institutional website: www.tricountycc.edu

AB Tech

Partnering school district(s): Madison County Schools

Primary GEAR UP contact: Dr. Fairley Patton
Contact information:

  • fairleypatton@abtech.edu

Institutional website: www.abtech.edu

Caldwell Community College

and Technical Institute

Partnering school district(s): Watauga County Schools

Primary GEAR UP contact: Dena Holman
Contact information:

  • dnholman@cccti.edu

Institutional website: www.cccti.edu

Mayland Community College

Partnering school district(s): Yancey County Schools

Primary GEAR UP contact: Monica Carpenter
Contact information:

  • mscarpenter@mayland.edu

Institutional website: www.mayland.edu

Southwestern Community College

Partnering school district(s): Swain County Schools

Primary GEAR UP contact: Cheryl Contino-Conner
Contact information:

  • cheryl@southwesterncc.edu

Institutional website: www.southwesterncc.edu

UNC Asheville

Partnering school district(s): All

Primary GEAR UP contact: Andrea Martinez
Contact information:

  • amartine@unca.edu

Institutional website: www.unca.edu

Western Piedmont Community College

 

Partnering school district(s): Burke County Schools

Primary GEAR UP contact: Jennifer Propst
Contact information:

  • jpropst@wpcc.edu

Institutional website: www.wpcc.edu

Wilkes Community College                         

 

Partnering school district(s): Wilkes County Schools

Primary GEAR UP contact: Bekah Gardner
Contact information:

  • rkgardner419@wilkescc.edu

Institutional website: www.wilkescc.edu