ELKINS - New recruits to the Davis & Elkins College Upward Bound Program became active members during the November Challenge Session. A federally funded TRiO program, Upward Bound is designed to prepare high school students for postsecondary success.
Program Director Carol Suder-Howes notes that the goal of Upward Bound is to increase the rate at which participants complete secondary education and enroll in and graduate from institutions of postsecondary education. According to the West Virginia Higher Education’s report “West Virginia College-Going Rate Fall 2017,” an estimated 10,207, or 54.5 percent, of the 18,736 students who graduated from public or private high schools in West Virginia during 2016-2017 enrolled in higher education institutions in the fall 2017 semester.
“The 2017 Annual Performance Data reveals that 95 percent of the Pendleton and Pocahontas County Upward Bound participants enroll in college immediately following high school,” said D&E Upward Bound Assistant Director Alison Shields. “Students enrolled in Upward Bound are more likely to enter and complete college.”
The local program serves students from Barbour, Pendleton, Pocahontas, Randolph and Tucker counties. Currently, 138 students – including the 53 selected in the recent recruiting period – are enrolled in the Davis & Elkins College Upward Bound program.
New members are: Elkins High School, Sierra Channell, Kristen George, Keely Humphries, Kymberly Knapp, Kelsey Mahanes, Jaemasun Reams and Hannah Steiger; Harman High School, Caitlyn Kerns, Kendra Lambert and Trista Thompson; Philip Barbour High School, Kiana Bolyard, Laura Burkhard, Danielle Cross, Nate Finley, Kaitlyn Marsh, Emma Phillips, Taylor Pingley and Graci Schoonover; Pendleton County High School, Kelsey Cook, Briana Kimble, Hayley Mauzy, Jody Mullens, Kenya Munguia, Jess Puffenbarger, Taylor Ruddle, Katie Scott, Regan Sites, Bailey Thompson, Jay Tompkins and Jaxson Willis; Pocahontas County High School, Ayden Carroll, Emma Dean, Dakota Dunbrack, Chloe Hardesty, Autumn Lane, Stephen Lester, Glenn Malcomb, Lucy Miller and T.D. Sparks; Tucker County High School, Trevor Adams, Kaylyn Crossland, Emma Jo Hockman, Sadie Palmer and Elaina Smallwood; Tygarts Valley High School, Ryan Defibaugh, Danny Lipscomb, Courtney Louk, Tracey Matthew, Austin Simmons, Jazmyn Teter and Metaya Teter.
The Davis & Elkins College Upward Bound Program received $710,463 in funding from the U.S. Department of Education and provides services at no costs to participants. During the academic year, the students participate in monthly activities that consist of various academic topics, such as career, financial aid, cultural and community service. For their December Challenge Session, participants toured West Liberty University and attended a Nailers Hockey Game.
Upward Bound students are required to complete monthly tutoring, which prepares them for standardized tests, career and college exploration, and scholarship applications. Students meet weekly with academic and school advisers in their high schools.
“Having these resources available to students during the academic year is incredibly valuable,” said D&E Upward Bound Assistant Director Katy Dillon. “They know that Upward Bound is here to help them with every question they have during their college planning process and this is a part of why they are so successful.”
The Upward Bound Program offers a summer residential program on the campus of Davis & Elkins College as well as a Bridge Program. Participants can earn the opportunity to take up to six hours of college credit, following their graduation from high school and prior to enrolling in college.
Students not selected are placed on a waiting list for an available opening.
Established during President Lyndon B. Johnson’s administration, the Upward Bound Program provides services to students who would be the first generation in their family to complete a four-year degree or those who meet income guidelines. The program’s goal is to ensure that these students graduate high school, pursue and complete postsecondary education.
For more information regarding Upward Bound, call 800-624-3157, extension 1989 or visit www.deupwardbound.com.
Related to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Davis & Elkins College is located in Elkins, 2 hours east of Charleston, 3 hours south of Pittsburgh and 4 hours west of Washington, D.C. For more information, please visit the College website at www.dewv.edu or call 304-637-1243.