Hope College Upward Bound, a college-readiness program for high school students, is celebrating its 30th anniversary with a banquet at the Holiday Inn in Holland on Friday, June 5, that will draw alumni from three decades.

          Hope College Upward Bound began in the summer of
  1968, as a residential program attended by 12 students.  The
  program now runs during the school year and summer alike,
  and will host 65 students when the 1998 summer session
  begins on June 15.
          Since its inception, the program has worked with
  more than 1,100 students.  Some 300 are expected to attend
  the banquet, including not only alumni, but also current
  students, staff members and others with an interest in the
          Master of ceremonies for the banquet will be A.
  Edward Sosa of Jenison, a 1973 graduate of West Ottawa High
  School who participated in Hope College Upward Bound that
  same year.  The banquet will also feature reflections by
  past participants in the program.
          The keynote speaker will be Alfred Ramirez, who is
  executive director with "Hand in Hands, Parents, Schools and
  Communities United for Kids."  Ramirez participated in an
  Upward Bound program in his native East Los Angeles.  His
  career has included serving as a faculty advisor and
  assistant director for admissions and minority recruitment
  for Columbia University, of which he is a graduate; as
  special assistant to the mayor of San Antonio, Texas; and as
  a special assistant to the president and associate director
  in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel and as
  executive director of the White House Initiative on
  Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans.
          Hope College Upward Bound seeks to generate the
  skills and motivation necessary for success in education
  beyond high school among students from low-income and first-
  generation families who have the potential to pursue a
  college education but lack adequate preparation.  The goal
  of the program is to increase the academic performance and
  motivational levels of eligible students so that persons may
  complete secondary schooling and successfully pursue post-
  secondary educational programs.
          Hope College Upward Bound works with students from
  three school districts in Allegan and Ottawa counties,
  including Holland, West Ottawa and Fennville.  Although the
  staff recruits students from the program's target area, many
  participants are also recommended by counselors, teachers,
  agencies and churches in the community.
          During the last three years, the program has
  achieved a 91 percent success rate in enrolling students in
  post-secondary institutions.
          While the focus of Upward Bound is on academic
  advising and support, the program also continually offers
  personal and career counseling as well as involvement in
  cultural and recreational activities.
          Throughout the school year, the participating
  students come to Hope College twice a week to receive help
  in their high school subjects from Hope College tutors.  One
  Friday or Saturday per month, the students meet for three
  hours to attend workshops on topics such as goal-setting,
  decision-making, the college search process, career
  awareness and time management.  A senior seminar which meets
  once a week helps seniors with the college admission
  process, financial aid and ACT/SAT testing.
          The six-week summer residential program on the
  Hope campus exposes students to the academic and social
  world of college.  Students live in a residence hall, attend
  classes in the morning, and participate in career
  internships and elective classes in the afternoon.  Evenings
  are set aside for study sessions and cultural activities.
          In addition to the structured academic and social
  activities, the Upward Bound students also volunteer for
  many community projects, such as raking leaves and painting
  homes for the elderly, and project Pride.  They also hold
  several fund-raisers throughout the year to raise money for
  their cultural enrichment and college scholarship funds.
          Hope College Upward Bound is funded through the
  federal TRIO program.  TRIO, so named because it originally
  included three program types, is funded under Title IV of
  the Higher Education Act of 1965.  Nationwide, more than
  1,750 TRIO programs serve nearly 700,000 low-income
  Americans.  The total includes approximately 600 Upward
  Bound programs.