The Lapwai and Orofino Upward Bound project first started at the University of Idaho in 1968. It was the first such project at UI and remains one of the longest running in the country. Indeed, very few of the more than 800 Upward Bound projects across the nation can trace their origins to the beginnings of what President Lyndon Johnson assured us would not be a short or easy struggle. We were born of the same legislation that created Work-Study, Head-Start, and low-interest student loans and we’ve been at the forefront of the effort to provide opportunity, enable access, and support the achievement of low-income and first-generation students. And we’re not done.
In 2012, Lapwai and Orofino Upward Bound was refunded by the US Department of Education—extending the University’s project until at least 2017. In the years ahead, we’ll continue the struggle and help lead the dialogue, strategy and actions that will enable our students to be successful.
Lapwai and Orofino Upward Bound consists of two major components: the Academic Year Program and the Summer Program.
During the academic year, Bridge Idaho dedicates full-time professional staff to both Lapwai High School and Orofino High School, providing tutoring, instruction, advising, guidance, mentoring, financial aid assistance, college admissions support and more. Activities out of school include college visits, cultural travel, as well as parent and community-based events.
The Summer Program provides the opportunity for participants to spend 6 weeks at the University of Idaho and on campuses across the country. Students travel, experience new culture, engage in workshops and internships, and take college classes that enable a jump-start on college—its not uncommon for our UB students to graduate high school with a semester or more of college and many core classes already complete. Departments and programs across the University of Idaho provide incredible support to ensure a student’s time in the summer is challenging, meaningful and rewarding—facilitating a familiarity with the academic rigor of higher education as well as the life and responsibilities of a college student. For more information on the Summer Program, click here (link to summer program fact sheet).
The University of Idaho partners with Lapwai and Orofino high schools to implement this Upward Bound project, serving at least 99 participants each year and striving to achieve the following objectives:
At least 75% of participants will achieve at least a 2.5 GPA
At least 75% of participants will achieve proficient on state assessments
At least 95% of participants will graduate high school
At least 70% of participants will complete a rigorous course of study in high school
At least 70% of participants will enroll in college immediately following high school completion
At least 60% of participants will complete college within 6 years of enrolling
Bridge Idaho has every intention of achieving beyond these ambitious objectives. In the past 5 years, 94% of our participants have achieved proficient on state assessments, 99% graduated high school, 75% enrolled in college immediately after high school, and 77% persisted in college.
Lapwai and Orofino Upward Bound is 100% federally funded by the US Department of Education at $411,899 annually.