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Upward Bound Student Experiences

upward bound monique brownMonique Brown

Grandview High School '14

Howard University

Upward Bound has had such a great effect on my life. This program helped me score a 25 on the ACT, graduate at the top ten percent of my graduating class, and become a Howard University student. Before I joined Upward Bound my sophomore year in high school, I was an average student; I did a lot of volunteer work and I was on average a 3.3 G.P.A. student. My mother was unemployed and my father was an enlisted Marine so I was not pushed hard academically. If my grades were good enough for them, they were good enough for me.

After joining Upward Bound, I was pushed to strive for the best. I became an "A" student, I was leading organizations and applying to and getting accepted into top-ranked colleges. The program staff helped me learn what I was capable of. They provided workshops every other weekend ranging from topics on money management to ACT prep classes. They also took us on different cultured-based activities. For example, two of my most memorable activities were watching the Winter Kansas City Symphonic Choir and Orchestra perform and eating at a Vietnamese restaurant and watching a Broadway performance.

Attending the concert was a great experience for me because I am in band myself and this event usually caters middle class and upper class members in society. Being part of the lower class, it was a honor to be there. Eating at a Vietnamese restaurant was also a great experience. I learned and experienced a different cultural type of food.

Upward Bound is also a great support system. The staff connected with the students on many levels. I could call them about any problem I was having, until this day I stay in contact with some of the staff members. It was like another family.

This college readiness program was the best thing I could have done in my life. It help set my future on the right track.

upward bound rose bertine mercierRose-Bertine Mercier

Ruskin High School '13

University of Kansas

Upward Bound had a large impact during my high school career. As I began to prepare for college, the advisors of Upward Bound provided multiple outlets as I prepared for college applications, ACT, and college essays. When I first applied for Upward Bound, I never expected so much variety in the program, it not only provided tutoring, but also scholarship opportunities, weekly activities incentives, traveling, and much more.

One of the highlights of this program was being able to experience what college could be. Each summer, Trio students were able to attend Avila University, stay at the dorms and take college courses. Graduated seniors, like myself, were given the opportunity to take summer courses that were transferred as we began our first semester of college.

One of the many resources that Upward Bound provided students were scholarships and grants. Figuring out how to pay for ACT and college applications was incredibly stressful. However, with Upward Bound's support I was able to not worry so much about the financial barriers that arose. I am extremely grateful for what Trio had to offer, it has impacted me beyond my high school career. The assistance they provided me along with other students concerning finances to information about college has given me insight on what I want to achieve.

Upward Bound is an extraordinary program that has guided and challenged me throughout my high school academics. Being able to be proactive in preparing for college, seeking advice, and knowing that there was someone ready to listen and provide me with help is something that I hope than any potential trio participant will be able to experience. Like me, many other students have benefited from Upward Bound. I hope this program continues to create opportunities for students and help them reach success.

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