Posted 7 months ago
By John Axtell
The seventh year of the Upward Bound program at Chadron State College got underway Sunday evening with 25 disadvantaged students from Chadron, Crawford, Alliance and Gordon-Rushville high schools starting a 4-week stay on campus getting a taste of college life.
Upward Bound director Maggie Smith-Bruehlman says the students live during the week in Edna Work Hall, then are driven home on Friday afternoon and picked up and returned to campus on Sunday evening.
It’s a year-long program, with the on-campus summer portion intended to them a real-life introduction to college life…living with roommate, attending classes, eating in the cafeteria, and taking part in activities.
Smith-Bruehlman says one way to judge its success is the number of graduates who go one to college. This fall’s freshman class at CSC has 5 of them: Angie Scherbarth and Maryline Watak of Chadron, Cristian Hulsey and Cierra McKibben of Alliance, and Elspeth Moon of Gordon.
The UB class schedules resemble a college schedule with courses that include Chinese language, conflict resolution, choir, science adventures, yoga, literature, art, math, success planning and other topics, many taught by CSC faculty members and students.
After classes are over, students choose from a study hall or activities…indoor and outdoor…such as riding and swimming at Chadron State Park or touring the Museum of the Fur Trade.
The 4-week on-campus session ends later this month on the 27th with an awards banquet, talent show, and art show, but the students will then spend their final week on a group trip.
Past locations have included Santa Fe, Yellowstone, and the Rocky Mountains. This year, it’s a three-day trip to educational and cultural sites in the Black Hills.
Smith-Bruehlman says a special feature this year is an essay contest with the six winning students traveling to Yellowstone National Park in October for a 5-day Yellowstone Association educational program about geology, natural history and wildlife.
CSC English faculty member Dr. Lee Miller will incorporate the Yellowstone theme in his writing class and select the winners, who will be announced at the awards banquet.
Smith-Bruehlman is assisted this year by 4 group leaders, current CSC students or recent graduates. Graduate Katie Patrick from Alliance, is returning for the sixth year as a group leader.
Patrick is joined by new leaders April Stangle, who will be teaching at Hay Springs High School this fall, junior communications art major Kyle Tarbutton from Columbus, Ohio, and education major Channing Jons from Newcastle, Wyoming.