Local high school students move on campus, experience college life, thanks to $5M grant

150 Northstate high school students are participating in a program, helping those with a lower chance of attending college.

150 Northstate high school students ranging from sophomores to seniors are living on campus at Simpson University for a week. They are attending workshops and presentations designed to inspire them to go to college and pursue a career, through a program called "Upward Bound."

Simpson University was awarded a $5 million-dollar federal grant last year for Upward Bound. The program helps high school students from low-income families and families where neither parent has earned a college degree.

Dave Radford is the Director of Upward Bound for Siskiyou County.

"The Upward Bound program exists in the schools during the school year and then there is a six week summer component," Radeford explained. "For our grants, the way we're orchestrating it is they're doing one week here at Simpson, living in the dorms, getting a college experience and kind of have a college schedule so they have them learn their own time and management. Then they are going to be back at their high school campuses over the summer doing online classes [and] already earning college credit."

"The counties that we serve, 30-percent of our students are going off to college, while statewide it's around 68-percent who are going off to college," Radford said.

Upward Bound hopes to encourage more students like West Valley High School senior Seth Oller and Sophomore Julian Bishop, by offering a real-world glimpse into college life.

"Here I am at this campus, gorgeous campus, learning what it's like to live with other people I may not know, other people I may not like to know, but it's really fun," said Oller.

"My experience here I would have to describe as you know, just a real eye-opener. I learned that to be truly happy in life you can't have a one-track mind on what you want to be in life. No matter what there are always different chances that you can take and always a better outcome," said Bishop.

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