Based on the guiding ideal that test scores are not the only reflection of a student’s abilities, the Academic Achievement Programs have spent the last 50 years helping low-income, first-generation and traditionally underrepresented students transition to and succeed at the University of Maryland.

With seven programs focused on academic support and skill development, AAP today serves over 2,500 students annually and has contributed to the integration and diversification of the university community.

“Every student is born with the seed of greatness within them,” says Jerry L. Lewis, the longtime executive director. "What we have to do is to encourage them to reach deep within themselves to become all that they can be."

Watch the video above to learn more about the half-century of history of AAP.