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Upward Bown

Upward Bound Academy


Veronica Knight
Upward Bound Director

Cicely Bledsoe
office: 913-288-7615
mobile: 913-414-6976

If you believe that you can achieve greatness, then the Upward Bound Program is for you!

Success is a combination of big dreams, hard work and the right tools. At Upward Bound Academy, if you supply the vision and determination, then we will give you the tools you need. If you have the dream of enrolling in college after high school and becoming a college graduate, the Upward Bound Academy Program is for you. Our ultimate goal is to produce transformative adults who actively pursue and obtain professional careers and make their marks on the world. If you have the right attitude and willpower, the Upward Bound Academy Program is for you.

Kansas City Kansas Community College, in partnership with select area high schools has been awarded the Upward Bound (UB) Grant from the U.S. Department of Education. This important grant was designed to help generate within program participants the skills and motivation necessary to successfully complete high school and to enter and succeed in a program of postsecondary education at the college or university of their choice. Upward Bound provides students with academic, cultural and social activities intended to build skills, motivation and self-confidence.

Upward Bound is a nationwide federally funded, college preparatory program for high school students who are prospective first generation and/or Pell grant eligible. The program provides opportunities for participants to succeed in their pre-college performance and ultimately in their higher education pursuits.


You must complete an application to qualify for the program. A complete application includes personal identification information, one recommendation and income eligibility verification information.

Please note that you will be asked to provide your Social Security number which will only be used for yearly reporting purposes to the federal government and college applications during your senior year.

Apply to the Upward Bound Academy


To ensure academic progress, Upward Bound Academy provides the following services to students:

  • Nine months of academic tutorial service
  • and academic enrichment classes
  • Six-week summer non-residential program
  • Assistance with the completion of ACT, financial aid and college applications
  • Monthly Saturday workshops and classroom instruction
  • College tours in and out of the state
  • Cultural enrichment field trips
  • Exposure to a variety of career fields
  • College application assistance for seniors
  • Service-learning and volunteer opportunities
  • Mentoring
  • Counseling
  • Career planning
  • Speakers
  • Community service opportunities
  • Stipend provided


To qualify to participate in Upward Bound you must:

  • You must be a U.S. Citizen or Legal Permanent Resident
  • You must attend Washington or F.L. Schlagle High School
  • Meet low-income guidelines as determined by the U.S. Department of Education and/or
  • Be the first in your family to earn a 4-year bachelor’s degree (neither parent/guardian has received a bachelor’s degree)


The Kansas City Kansas Community College program is free to all selected participants. Upward Bound was created in 1965 as part of the Higher Education Act and is fully funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

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