April 25, 2011
Brandy McQuaid, a Colonial High School senior, wakes up early in the morning, showers and gets dressed. She rechecks her backpack, making sure that she has all the supplies she’ll need. She walks into her classroom, finds a seat and begins the school day. This is just the typical Saturday routine for an Upward Bound or Talent Search student.
Part of the federally funded Trio program, Upward Bound (UB) and Educational Talent Search prepare high school students for college. A staple on the Rollins campus for 30 years, both programs serve the educational needs of Central Florida's diverse community by providing tutoring, mentoring and opportunities for college preparedness.
“Upward Bound is a college-access program that works with high school students in underserved areas,” said Carrie Glatting, Rollins’ pre-collegiate coordinator. “Our students are smart, creative and incredibly determined individuals who want to be the first in their families to earn a four-year college degree. We provide the academic and social resources required for student success.”
The selected students, who must meet preset requirements and interview with a program counselor, attend classes on designated Saturdays during the academic year on the Rollins campus. After the academic year is completed, UB students spend six weeks of their summer living in a dormitory hall, where they prepare for and get a closer glimpse into college life.
Quang Doan, an Evans High School junior who has been in the program for three years, discovered Upward Bound through his friends. For him, the program offers more individualized college preparation. “The teachers help us with subjects where we’re struggling and allow us to get a jump-start on upcoming curriculum during the summer. We also work on time management skills, which we will need once we get to college.”
In an effort to better meet the community’s educational needs and strengthen the focus on engaged learned, the Office of Community Engagement will now be working even more closely with the program. “We are thrilled to announce that Rollins’ Educational Talent Search and Upward Bound programs have joined the Office of Community Engagement,” said Micki Meyer, director of community engagement. “This alignment will allow both programs to continue their work in empowering youth in our community, while joining efforts with our office’s existing programs, resources and staff that are focused on similar efforts. The merger reinforces Rollins’ commitment to Educational Talent Search and Upward Bound and puts critical community and educational efforts at the center of Rollins’ experience.”
College enrollment, which is the main focus of Upward Bound, is a huge motivating factor for these students. For McQuaid, a senior who joined the program in her sophomore year, the program offers the knowledge and confidence to apply to college. “My parents weren’t able to provide me with the information I needed because they never received it either,” said McQuaid. “They’re happy that I got involved with Upward Bound, because now I can break the cycle and every generation in my family after me will be able to go to [college,] too.”
By Sofia Macias (Class of 2013HH)
Office of Public Relations & Community Affairs
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