Veterans Upward Bound Receives $1.44 Million Grant

The U.S. Department of Education renewed a grant totaling $1.44 million for Redlands Community College’s Veterans Upward Bound (VUB) program for an additional five years, allowing the program’s team to continue expanding the relationships they have developed with Oklahoma veterans. 

Over the past year, Redlands Community College has been very successful in serving Oklahoma veterans. The VUB program participated in over 400 outreach efforts and attended events including the 2022 Oklahoma State Fair, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Tribal events, Mustang Western Days, Yukon Czech Festival, the Oklahoman-sponsored Job Fair and many more. VUB Director Randy Reynolds and his staff go above and beyond to serve and change the lives of as many veterans as possible.

Veterans Upward Bound, a federally funded program through the U.S. Department of Education offered at no cost to eligible veterans, is designed to assist first-generation and/or low-income veterans in the development of the required skills needed to succeed in postsecondary education. The program provides counseling, mentoring, tutoring and academic instruction in the core subject areas. The VUB staff is also able to assist with school comparison and selection, academic skills development, academic program research, financial aid assistance, admissions assistance, transcript requests, financial literacy and test preparation. Additionally, the VUB staff will assist veterans in securing support services from other locally available resources such as the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Administration, Oklahoma Dept. of Veterans Affairs, veteran associations, veteran service organizations and other state and local agencies that serve veterans. 

“Leading Veterans Upward Bound is one of the most rewarding jobs I could imagine doing, providing veterans in our service area with essential educational resources, including academic tutoring, counseling and guidance in the areas of academic programs, admission and financial benefits,” said Reynolds. “I will never turn away supporting a veteran’s dreams, and my team will continue bending over backwards to do so as long as we can.” 

During this renewal season, the Veterans Upward Bound team plans to continue to reach veterans where they are through more events and outreach opportunities. Goals for this grant are to continue building relationships with local civic groups and organizations within the 18 Oklahoma awarded counties and 26 Native American tribes and nations, with a focus on serving a minimum of 125 low-income, first generation veterans each fiscal year of the five-year grant. 

“Redlands salutes Veterans Upward Bound in the invaluable work they provide to so many veterans in our state,” said Redlands President Jack Bryant. “Our staff has done a remarkable job of administering the program and serving numerous veterans. As a veteran myself, I am honored to continue to have this program housed through our institution to support veterans’ college dreams and want to say a special thank you to our dedicated staff.”

The Redlands Veterans Upward Bound is headquartered at the main campus in El Reno but has satellite offices at the Oklahoma Works American Job Centers in Oklahoma City and Lawton, and the Harry S Truman Education Center at Fort Sill.

For more information, visit Redlands Community College Veterans Upward Bound, or call (405) 422-1405.