The Focus Is You

What is Upward Bound?

Upward Bound (UB) is a federally funded program for students who are interested in postsecondary education after graduation from high school. During the school year, students attend monthly academic meetings and participate in an online tutoring program.  During the summer, students live on the SWOSU campus and participate in a full schedule of academic, social (including sports), and cultural activities for six weeks. During the school year and summer, students will also receive personal and academic counseling, assistance with financial aid and college admission applications, preparation for the ACT, an ACT fee waiver, will visit college campuses, and will be exposed to professional careers and mentors.

Upward Bound Class

Who may apply?

Only students whose goal it is to obtain a college degree and who are not a discipline problem at school need apply.  Students wishing to apply must meet the following 5 criteria:

  1. Be a U.S Citizen, permanent resident, or in the U.S. for other than a temporary reason and provide evidence of their intent to become a permanent resident.
  2. Be from a low-income family (as determined by TAXABLE income) AND/OR be a potential first-generation college student (neither parent has a 4-year degree).
  3. Have a core GPA of 2.50 or higher (math, English, science, history, and foreign language).
  4. Be enrolled in the 9th, 10th, or 11th grade, AND attend one of the six following high schools:
    Anadarko, Burns Flat-Dill City, Canute, Carnegie, Clinton, Fort Cobb-Broxton
  5. Be willing and able to participate in all scheduled program services and activities, unless a qualifying school activity prevents one from doing so.  This includes attending the Saturday Academies during the school year and the six-week residential program each summer.

What is the "Bridge" program?

Students who remain in UB and graduate high school may “bridge” into college the summer following graduation. UB will pay for up to 6 hours of tuition, fees, books, room and board.  Bridge students are still a part of UB and will continue to participate in all trips, services and activities that do not interfere with their college classes. Tutors and study labs are provided to ensure each student “bridges” successfully.

How much does Upward Bound Cost?

All services and activities are provided FREE of cost to all eligible participants. UB spends $4,454 per student every year. The only cost to the student is to follow the rules and remain committed to the program until graduation from high school. The only cost to the parents/guardians is their cooperation and support.

How do I apply?

You may request an application from your school counselor. Once you have completed the application, give it to your school counselor along with your parent’s income tax return. He/she will mail it to our office with your transcript and test scores. Only completed applications will be considered.

I've turned in my application, now what?

UB staff will review all applications to determine eligibility. Once eligibility has been established, students will be selected based on need. Those selected will be required to, with at least one parent/ guardian, meet with a staff person to discuss the program goals and requirements. Students not selected will be notified by mail and placed on a waiting list. As an opening(s) becomes available, students will be selected from the waiting list based on need.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Southwestern Oklahoma State University Upward Bound Program is to empower 85 participants with the academic skills and motivation necessary to graduate from high school, enter and succeed in a postsecondary education program.

In order to meet its commitment for student success, the Upward Bound Program recruits qualified students and will provide tutoring, personal, career and academic counseling to students on a continuous basis throughout the academic year and summer component. Saturday Academies are provided bi-monthly during the academic year to enrich the students’ school curriculum. A six-weeks summer component is conducted to provide students with an intense academic and cultural experience, while preparing them for college life.

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The Focus Is You