Step Up to College

The Step Up to College​ (SUTC) program allows students ages 16-20 from Grandview, Mabton, and Toppenish school districts to earn a high school diploma or GED.

For individuals living within the Grandview, Mabton, and Toppenish school district boundaries who:

  • will not graduate from high school on time because they have not earned enough high school credits,
  • will turn 21 years of age before they graduate from high school, or
  • are former high school students, under the age of 21, who did not graduate and are now trying to earn a high school diploma.

How it works

Students admitted in the program can enroll in courses at a YVC Campus or Learning Center which will help them earn a high school diploma. These courses can include English Language Acquisition (formerly ESL), Adult Basic Education, college level transfer, and professional technical courses that prepare students to enter the workforce. The specific courses a student enrolls in will depend upon the student’s educational goals, the credits the student needs to complete a high school diploma, and the student’s placement scores.

The Step Up to College program recognizes high school credit students have already learned.  Students earn additional high school credit when they demonstrate competency in a subject.  Competency can be demonstrated by passing a class, earning a certain score on a placement exam, or showing documented evidence that the student has already gained the knowledge needed to meet course outcomes through training and/or work experience.

Student Responsibility

For students to be successful in the Step Up to College program they need to attend classes daily, complete class assignments, and study daily. The program is designed to prepare students to enter college. Students are expected to check in weekly with a case manager and will need to show academic progress every three months.

Graduation Requirements

Until students are 21 years of age, they still must meet the high school graduation requirements for their graduating class. This includes passing the applicable Washington State graduation exams and completing a High School and Beyond plan.

​If students turn 21 before finishing their high school diploma, they will automatically transition into the YVC High School 21+ (HS21+) adult high school diploma program and must meet the applicable graduation requirements for their age in the YVC HS21+ program. They will not have to pass the applicable Washington State graduation exams or complete a High School and Beyond plan.

Program Cost

Students under 21 years of age are not required to pay any tuition costs.  Students who turn 21 without earning their high school diploma will automatically move into the YVC HS21+ program and will need to pay Adult Basic Skills tuition, which is $25 per quarter.​


Enrollment in the Step Up to College program is ongoing, students can start at anytime.

There is not cost to eligible students under 21 years of age.



Meet with your school’s graduation specialist for a referral. They will answer any questions about eligibility and program requirements.


Students can also begin enrollment paperwork. Submit completed paperwork to the corresponding office at Yakima Valley College Campus or  Learning Center.


Once admitted into the program students need take a YVC entrance assessment. A test date schedule is available by calling 509.882.7014.


Students will then schedule a meeting with a YVC case manager and advisor.


The Step Up to College​ program allows students ages 16-20 from Grandview, Mabton, and Toppenish school districts to earn a high school diploma or GED.

Please bring to YVC all high school transcripts from schools you previously attended.

Alejandra MendozaYour Content Goes Here
Main Building, Room 110
Grandview Campus

Learning Center Locations

Yakima Campus

​ S. 16th & Nob Hill Blvd., Yakima, WA 98902 (Sundquist​​)

Grandview Campus

500 W. Main Street, Grandview, WA 98930​


401 E. Mountainview, Ellensburg, WA 98926

Toppenish Learning Center

720 West Third Avenue, Toppenish, WA 98948

La Casa Hogar

106 S. 6th St, Yakima, WA 98901