Skip to main content
MenuSearch & Directory

Upward Bound

The Saint Louis University Upward Bound program (SLU-UB) is a college preparatory academy that provides high school students the opportunity to acquire the academic skills and personal motivation necessary to finish high school, and to enter and earn a degree from a college or university.

The program is free and open to 9th-12th grade students from the following high schools in the Ferguson-Florissant and Riverview Gardens school districts in North St. Louis County. The University will annually serve 60 students at each participating school. 

  • McCluer High School
  • McCluer North High School
  • Riverview Gardens High School

Upward Bound Application for Admission

About Upward Bound

Funded by the Department of Education, Upward Bound is a college-access program that stimulates students’ interest in postsecondary education and various career fields, including science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics. UB programs are specifically designed to assist limited-income high school students who have the potential to be the first in their families to attain a college degree.

Upward Bound is focused on helping students sharpen leadership skills, engage in career and college exploration, learn from guest speakers, and participate in service-learning opportunities and social and cultural outings.

Academic Year Academy

SLU's Upward Bound program includes an academic-year component that begins in September and ends in May. Saturday Academy classes will provide additional academic support and development on two Saturdays of each month. Students will receive tutoring, ACT/SAT preparation, personal and career guidance, assistance with financial aid and the college admissions process (both in school and on SLU’s campus).

Summer Academy

Students enrolled in the SLU-UB program are required to participate in a six-week residential Summer Academy program that begins in mid-June. Classes are held Monday-Friday, and students also participate in fine arts, recreational and cultural activities. The Summer Academy concludes with a college tour. Students travel to selected cities to tour campuses to gain a better understanding of college.

Services Provided to Students and Families

We provide the following services to high school students participating in the programs:

  • Educational support, including tutoring, homework assistance, supplemental instruction, and group/individual academic enrichment
  • Personal and leadership-skill development
  • Experience with collaborative work groups and research projects
  • A rich, integrated, pre-college curriculum
  • Dual-credit opportunities
  • Career and college exploration, campus visits, ACT preparation and financial aid application assistance
  • Service-learning and community service opportunities
  • Social and cultural programs
  • Experience living in a college residence hall
  • Parent and family support, including workshops, support groups and connections to additional community resources

Eligibility Guidelines

The federal government sets the guidelines for eligibility. To be eligible for Upward Bound, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Be first-generation college-bound (neither parent living in the home has a four-year degree) and/or limited income household based off the Department of Education Federal TRIO Programs income levels.
  • Taking a college prep curriculum
  • Have and maintain a 2.5 GPA in high school
  • Display potential to succeed at the postsecondary level
  • Attend a target school district high school or reside in North St. Louis County

Meet the Upward Bound Team 

We have a team dedicated to serving students participating in SLU Upward Bound programs and their families. In addition to the academic guidance and assistance provided by our central staff and faculty, participants receive support from various SLU campus and local community resources.

Anitra Laktzian-Brown

Interim director

Cell: 314-708-7535

Asia Wilson

Education advisor II

Cell: 314-708-7534

Christopher Turner

Education advisor I

Cell: 314-708-7540

Teneshia Richards  

Student engagement specialist

Cell: 314-708-7533

Keanna Hammons

Education advisor I

Cell: 314 -708-7532


What is my commitment to Upward Bound?

Students who are accepted into Upward Bound are accepted for the remainder of their high school careers, provided they keep their grades up and continue participating. We ask that students attend all Upward Bound-sponsored events.

What does the program expect from students?

The program requires a commitment from participating students to:

  • Take a college prep curriculum during the academic year
  • Participate in the summer program
  • Attend the after-school meetings
  • Work hard and have a positive attitude
  • Graduate from high school
  • Attend a college or university and graduate
If I am accepted to Upward Bound, will I be allowed to participate in extra-curricular activities at my high school?

We encourage students to participate in extra-curricular activities in their high schools, whether it is sports, clubs, drama or band.

Can I work and participate in Upward Bound?

Yes, you can work if it does not interfere with Upward Bound’s required activities and attendance.

What kind of commitments must families make to the program?

We want to develop a strong working partnership with every student and their family. Therefore, it is important that the family unit consider the following: the purpose of the program, services provided, time commitments for the school year and summer programs, and the importance of open communication.