The Academic Year Program is an important component of the Upward Bound experience. Throughout the school year, staff members and counselors are assigned to each participating school. The staff meets with current Upward Bound students regularly to discuss academic and personal aspects of their lives. They also recruit new students during these scheduled school visits.
Upward Bound staff members assist students with college planning, the college application and financial aid processes.
Each semester Upward Bound students attend an average of two college visits. The junior and senior students choose individual colleges that they would like to further investigate and Upward Bound staff can help to arrange for a visit to that college. Some of the students are given interviews and thorough tours of the campus. Upward Bound workshops focus on the college selection and financial aid processes. Staff members supervise and assist in college research and the completion of forms. Students are required to evaluate their own performance as well as what they learn.
Also, as part of this experience, all Upward Bound students are required to attend Saturday classes and workshops during the Fall and Spring semester.
Classes are tutorial in nature and attendance is encouraged with monthly stipends. The academic year program focuses around twice weekly tutorials and counseling at target schools, and tutorial service to support the student's college preparatory curriculum.
A program newsletter and regular updates are sent to each participant indicating important dates and events; student accomplishments throughout the school year; former bridge student information; and news updates. The newsletter and fliers also keep the parents informed of program events and the successes of Upward Bound students.