Step Up

  • Step Up helps 9th through 12th graders make a smooth transition to and through their high school career. Every year, Step Up keeps 400 amazing kids in school and thriving academically at three Portland Public high schools: Roosevelt, Madison, and Franklin. Roosevelt is the original home of Step Up, being created over 17 years ago.

    Our students are personally supported by a Step Up Advocate all year through comprehensive tutoring, strength-based advocacy, emotional support, character building workshops, and family engagement activities.

    In a one-week summer leadership academy, Step Up Advocates challenge youth to identify their aspirations and commit to working together towards those goals. Leadership and team-building activities reinforce students’ understanding of their capacity to achieve their dreams through education and hard work, all with the support of an Advocate. 

    These self-defined goals form the basis for their participation in Step Up throughout the following year.  By the end of camp, students and their Advocates have formed close relationships based on mutual commitment to success in high school.

    Step Up Advocates partner with the school to offer after-school tutoring from 3:30 to 5:30 pm- Monday through Thursday, continued leadership development, and close social/emotional support in small “Advocate groups” of around 15 Step Up youth. (During distant learning, these supports are being done virtually, with the possibility of small-outdoor in person meetups for support)


    Site Supervisor: Sergio de Barros


    Student Success Specialist: Ulises Torres