Upward Bound

Upward Bound

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Upward Bound is a federally funded grant program, which aims to improve the academic performance, motivation level, and self-confidence of participating students, to help them reach their ultimate goal of achieving a college degree. The program, housed at Tennessee Wesleyan University, serves up to 65 high school students in Loudon, McMinn, Meigs, Monroe and Polk County schools.
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The program, housed at Tennessee Wesleyan University, serves up to 65 high school students in Loudon, McMinn, Meigs, Monroe and Polk County schools.

Upward Bound is joined by fellow Federal TRIO Programs, Talent Search and Student Support Services, to identify and provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. To complete the Upward Bound Interest Form, scroll to the bottom of the page.

Who Qualifies?

•Students who demonstrate academic potential and desire to complete a college degree.

•9th or 10th grade

•Meet specific family income guidelines and/or are potential first generation college graduates.

•Selection is based on application information, review of school records and teacher recommendations.

What Services Are Provided?
  • College preparation, through academics
  • English, math, science, and foreign language classes
  • Individualized tutoring
  • Career counseling
  • Cultural/educational activities and field trips
  • College campus visits
  • ACT preparation classes and tutoring
  • College application advising
  • Financial aid and scholarship information
Summer Program

Members attend a 6-week summer program on the campus of TWU each year. Students take a variety of academic, fitness, and fine arts classes, are provided room and board throughout the week, and go home on the weekends. The summer program concludes with a week-long cultural and educational field trip.

Career Work Study

Career Work Study provides rising seniors a chance to work in the career of their choice, and be paid by the Upward Bound Program. Students find an appropriate work site, and Upward Bound will pay their salary during the months of June, July, and August.

The Bridge Program

Bridge is for participants who have graduated from high school and plan to attend college in the fall. The Upward Bound program pays all expenses for graduates to take a free class at TWU that will then transfer to their college of choice the following fall.

Weekly/Monthly Meetings

The academic component of Upward Bound consists of weekly meetings with an academic advisor at the member’s high school. Also, one Saturday per month students are provided transportation to Tennessee Wesleyan for academic classes, ACT prep, financial aid information, self-esteem and fitness workshops, and a variety of other beneficial topics.


Because of grant funding, the Upward Bound program is free. Students who follow all academic, behavioral and attendance guidelines may also be eligible for a small stipend.

Participating Schools
  • Loudon High School
  • McMinn County High School
  • Meigs County High School
  • Polk County High School
  • Sequoyah High School
  • Sweetwater High School
  • Tellico Plains High School

TWU prepares students with the transformative experience and to be well-rounded leaders who make a positive impact on the world.

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