Upward Bound

Grow Upward - Bound Forward! The Upward Bound program provides fundamental support to participants in their preparation for college entrance. The program provides opportunities for participants to succeed in pre-college performance and ultimately in higher education pursuits.

Upward Bound serves high school students from low-income families and high school students from families in which neither parent holds a Bachelors Degree. The goal of Upward Bound is to increase the rates at which participants enroll in and graduate from institutions of postsecondary education. Our target schools include Centerville and Ottumwa.

What is Upward Bound?

Upward Bound is a federally funded educational program designed to provide first generation and/or income eligible high school students with opportunities to succeed in high school and obtain a college degree.  Indian Hills Community College’s Upward Bound program serves students in the Ottumwa and Centerville Community School Districts and provides students with academic, cultural, and social activities intended to build skills, motivation, and self-confidence.

Upward Bound Letter

What are the benefits of Upward Bound?

  • Tutoring in a small-group setting to improve academic performance in various subjects and study skills
  • ACT/SAT preparation
  • Assistance completing college entrance and financial aid applications
  • One-on-one academic and financial advising
  • Visits to college campuses and first-hand experience as a college student
  • Career exploration
  • Cultural, social, and recreational activities designed to foster personal growth
  • Opportunities to meet and build relationships with other college-bound students

Academic Year

During the academic year, students will meet with their Upward Bound Academic Advisor on a weekly basis to receive academic services offered in the program. In addition to weekly services, students will participate in Saturday Seminar sessions which will occur one Saturday each month and be utilized for college visits, cultural events, and field trips.

Summer Session

Throughout a six-week summer session, participants will be immersed in the college experience.  Upward Bound participants will reside on the Indian Hills Ottumwa campus, attend classes, and participate in various on-campus activities.  Upward Bound’s summer session not only exposes participants to the fun and challenges of the college experience but also offers students the chance to gain a sense of independence and insight into their own future college experience.  The summer session will conclude with a five-day trip to a metropolitan area where the Upward Bound staff and students will experience the educational and cultural amenities the city has to offer.


Apply for Upward Bound

To apply for Upward Bound services or recommend a student for Upward Bound, please complete and submit one of the forms below.

Apply Online

Print an Application

Recommend a Student for Upward Bound


Do you have questions or concerns about the Upward Bound Program at Indian Hills? No worries, just ask one of the contacts below.


Mariah NicholsMariah Nichols, Program Director, Pre-College TRIO Programs
Upward Bound and Talent Search
Indian Hills Community College

525 Grandview Avenue Ottumwa, Iowa 52501
Phone: (641) 683-5111 x1828
Email: [email protected] 



Jessica CainJessica Cain, Academic Advisor, Upward Bound
Indian Hills Community College

525 Grandview Avenue Ottumwa, Iowa 52501
Phone: (641) 684-6511 ext. 6914
Email: [email protected]



MollyMolly Van Roekel, Academic Advisor, Upward Bound
Indian Hills Community College

721 North 1st Street Centerville, Iowa 52544
Phone: (641) 680-0009
Email: [email protected]