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Area students complete Upward Bound program at Saint Francis University

Two area high school students participated in Upward Bound’s 42nd annual summer program at Saint Francis University.
They include Felicia Fisher, a rising senior at Tyrone Area High School, and David Ralston, a rising senior at Bellwood-Antis High School.
From June 17 through July 27, participants resided on the campus of Saint Francis University, attending five classes a day. Course selection during the 2007 Summer Program ranged from Geometry, Forensic Science, America’s Camelot: The Kennedy Administration, Gothic Drama, and Anatomy and Physiology to Calculus, The Canterbury Tales, Physics, The Legend of King Arthur, and SAT Writing.
In addition to a challenging curriculum, students participated in a variety of activities, including a production of Camelot at the Benedum Theater, a Living Wax Museum, and a college fair at Penn State University.
At the conclusion of the summer program, the students attended a performance at Medieval Times in New Jersey before enjoying a day at Six Flags – Great Adventure.
Created in 1965 as part of President Lyndon Johnson’s “War of Poverty,” Upward Bound’s mission is to generate in eligible high school students the skills and motivation necessary for success in college.
Originally funded in 1966, the Saint Francis University Upward Bound Program has provided services to more than 2,000 students from Blair, Cambria, Huntingdon, Indiana, Lancaster and Somerset counties; currently, the program serves 85 students from Blair and Cambria Counties. On average, 93 percent of program graduates pursue a postsecondary degree; by contrast, only 51 percent of target area seniors pursue a postsecondary degree. After completing high school, 76 percent of Upward Bound graduates earn a college degree within five years. Nationally, only 19 percent of low income students earn a bachelor’s degree, while just 27 percent of first generation college students are expected to earn a bachelor’s degree.