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Upward Bound Public Health

PREP Group2011

Upward Bound Public Health (UBPH) 

Upward Bound Public Health (formerly known as PREP Academy) is a pre-college program designed to assist and support qualifying High School students in their goal of completing a college education. The primary focus of UBPH is to support and assist the student with the information and skills necessary to be successful in high school and college. UBPH seeks to prepare its students for emerging challenges of a global society with an emphasis in Public Health. Kent State University has a reputation of leadership in the area of Public Health, with all of its resources, will be at your disposal. UBPH targets Portage and Lorain counties who are in grades 9-12 who are first generation college bound. They must meet program guidelines.

The Department of Education in Washington, D.C., the Ohio Department of Human Services and Kent State University collaborate to support this Upward Bound Program.

What is Upward Bound Public Health:

The Kent State University Upward Bound Public Health program is an ongoing partnership between the Kent State University, Lorain, Ravenna, and Windham High Schools, and those communities to promote college readiness and success. Students will be exposed to and learn different facets of the Public Health industry.

Students develop a strong academic background and thorough preparation for entrance into and persistence in postsecondary education. 

What is the Purpose:

Upward Bound Public Health is a TRIO Program funded through the Department of Education.  The purpose of the program is to provide students who are first-generation college bound and meet income guidelines the preparation, support, and opportunities to successfully enter into postsecondary education. Upward Bound Public Health further includes an emphasis on public health fields and majors.  

Who qualifies for Participation:

63 total students from the target areas of Lorain, Ravenna, and Windham High Schools.  Students must meet the following criteria:

  • Currently in or rising into the 9th or 10th grade
  • Meet federal eligibility criteria
  • Other Academy guidelines as outlined in the application process 
Upward Bound Public Health Benefits:

Students and parents/guardians benefit greatly through their commitment and participation in the program.   Benefits include:

  •   Exposure to college majors, careers and expectations
  •   Opportunities to learn about college environments and processes
  •   Intensive academic support
  •   Enrichment and skill development
  •   Field trips, college visits and work study experiences
  •   Parent Advisory Council  
How are Services Delivered:

There are two components to the program – Academic Year and Summer Institute.

  • Academic Year:
    • Weekly Scholars Institute meetings and workshops
    • Academic support, tutoring, mentoring and advising
    • Parent/guardian workshops
    • Field trips and campus visits

  •  Summer Institute:
    • 6-week residential program at the University campus;
    • Students attend targeted classes in the fields of math, business, Language, science, and more
    • Students participate in intensive hands-on learning experiences, and field trips
    • Students engage in social and cultural activities designed to provide a holistic learning experience
Evidence of Success:

 The UBPH has a long history of success:

  • 5 year high school graduation rate:  100%
  • 5 year postsecondary enrollment rate:  86% (does not include 09)
  • Of 5 year Kent State UB graduates, first time enrollment is Kent State:  48%
  • 4 year postsecondary persistence rate:  71.2%
  • Of those who enrolled into Kent State, persistence rate:  73%

For more information, contact:


Henderson Ellis
Director, Upward Bound Math/Science Bio-Scholars & Public Health



Patty Robinson
Assistant Director, Upward Bound Public Health