A Black male student wearing protective goggles is soldering electrical wires


Upward Bound provides academic support and pre-college experiences for current high school students to assure their success in college.

We are federally-funded to serve first-generation and low-income college-bound students in Shawnee, Douglas, Leavenworth and Wyandotte counties with the goal of increasing the rate at which students complete high school and graduate from college.
A full classroom of high school students facing the presenter

Academic Year Program

During the academic year, students meet monthly with an advisor, work with tutors, attend campus visits and attend Campus Experience Institutes (CEIs) held on Saturdays. Ongoing activities include:

  • College and career fairs
  • College entrance exam test preparation
  • Community service events
  • Concerts and plays
  • Cultural awareness activities
  • Leadership conferences
  • Museum tours

Upward Bound students also have access to fee deferments, including waivers for SAT and ACT fees.

Non-Bridge Summer Institute

An intensive six-week academic program that gives participants a chance to experience college life while preparing for their upcoming school year.

During the Summer Institute, students share a room in a university residence hall with other participants and interact with instructors and residence hall advisors through taking five academic classes, have support finishing homework with the help of tutors.

In the evenings, students participate in a series of cultural and educational field trips throughout the summer. We also offer a variety of social activities each week, including swimming, rock climbing, basketball, video game tournaments and more.

Students qualify for this program based on grades in school and participation in CEIs. All expenses are paid, including meals and housing.

Summer Bridge Program

High-school seniors who have been admitted to a university or college may attend the Summer Bridge Program, which assists with the transition from high school to college. Participants enroll in college courses, attend study seminars, and meet with an Upward Bound advisor.