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The Upward Bound Program at UMF, started in 1980, serves 139 high school students from rural west central Maine. The program’s goal is to generate in disadvantaged, high potential participants the skills and motivation necessary for success in education beyond high school. This involves assistance in a program of academic instruction, college, financial aid and career counseling, tutoring, community service and cultural activities aimed at high school success and college enrollment.


The program operates year round. During the school year services are offered at the high schools and on the UMF campus. An intensive six week residential program takes place at UMF during the summer.

The University of Maine at Farmington Upward Bound Project aggressively identifies, recruits and selects participants in the program. Interested students can call the Upward Bound office or contact their guidance counselor for details.

UMF Upward Bound is a TRIO program and is administrated by the University with a grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

  • Serves 139 low income, first generation students from 9 target schools in West Central Maine each year.image004
  • Since the class of 2000, 80% of UMF Upward Bound seniors have enrolled in college. The State of Maine reports that since the class of 2000, 67% of all Maine seniors polled intend to go tocollege the following fall. Tom Mortenson (Postsecondary Education Opportunity, Nov. 2004) reports that the actual “Chance for College by Age 19” in Maine is 38.5%. For students from low income families in Maine that number falls to 33%.
  • Since 2000, 88% of UMF Upward Bound students have increased their high school GPA or have achieved a 2.67 (B-) or above GPA since entering the program.
  • Since the class of 1999, 69% of UMF Upward Bound students have graduated from college or are still enrolled in college (2 and 4 year programs). 64% have graduated from or are enrolled in a bachelor’s degree program. The University of Maine System reports that 49% of the 1995 cohort graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in six years. Tom Mortenson, in Postsecondary Education Opportunity, May 2004, estimates that only 8% of these students are from low income families.


UMF Upward Bound students receive:

  • Intensive academic instruction in mathematics (through advanced calculus), composition, literature, laboratory science,foreign language and study skills.
  • One-on-one academic, financial and personal counseling.
  • Personalized assistance in completing college admissions tests, college admissions applications and financial aid and scholarship applications.
  • Instruction in college planning.
  • College visits.
  • Career education, exploration, and experience.

Summer 2014