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High School Summer Launch

Prepare for College Success

Program Overview

High School Summer Launch is a one-week noncredit program designed to challenge and inspire students through innovative lectures, workshops, and seminars. Lectures provide a foundation for future study and academic exploration. Seminars take the confusion out of the college application process, while students create a personalized plan for choosing and applying to college. Interactive workshops allow students to hone specific skills such as leadership, teamwork, and communication.

This program is ideal for students who want a general introduction to college life and academics and are looking for a full pre-college experience in an accelerated format.

High School Summer Launch students live on campus in one of our top-ranked, air-conditioned residence halls. Specialized college readiness, community, and academic success enrichment activities are included in the program.

Learn more about our enrichment activities


High School Summer Launch is a one-week program from July 28-August 3, 2024.


To be eligible for High School Summer Launch students should:

  • Be a current freshman or sophomore in high school (graduating in 2026 or 2027).
  • As an international student, have a TOEFL iBT score of at least 90 or an IELTS Academic score of at least 6.5. Additional guidelines for international students are available here.

We are looking for mature, academically motivated students enrolled in challenging curriculum which may include honors, advanced placement, and International Baccalaureate courses, if offered by their high schools. Students who are collaborative, intellectually curious, and creative thinkers thrive in our program.

Fees and Scholarships

The 2024 program fee for High School Summer Launch is $1,385. Need-based scholarship assistance is available. Children of WashU employees and returning students are eligible for a 10% discount. Additional details on fees, need-based scholarships, and discounts are available here.

Grades and Transcripts

At the conclusion of course work, participation in High School Summer Launch will be recorded and grades earned become part of a student's record at WashU. Students may request an official transcript of grades earned. Requests should be made through the Office of the University Registrar.  

High School Summer Launch is a noncredit program. Noncredit programs do not issue a traditional letter grade (A, B, C, D, F). Instead, students will receive an "L" for successful completion/audit or a "Z" for unsuccessful completion/audit. Students are evaluated based on attendance, completion of assignments by deadlines, quality of work produced, participation in discussions, as well as their ability to adhere to academic integrity standards and program policies. 

Because High School Summer Launch is noncredit, no transferable credit is earned.

Acceptance and participation in High School Summer Launch course work and activities does not imply or guarantee acceptance into a degree program at WashU. For questions about the undergraduate admission process, please contact Undergraduate Admissions.

Program Schedule

The High School Summer Launch schedule is a busy one! Students engage in lectures, seminars, and workshops designed to build college readiness.

View 2024 Program Details

How to Apply

In order to apply to the High School Summer Launch, students must complete an online application, including short essays, and submit the following supplemental information:

  • $50 nonrefundable application fee
  • Transcript
  • Teacher recommendation
  • International applicants must send an official TOEFL iBT or IELTS Academic score report.

The deadline to submit an application and all supplemental information is April 1, 2024 at 11:59pm CT.

Questions about applying? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions web page.

2024 applications are closed. Applications for the 2025 summer will open November 1, 2024.


Something I have learned is to always be open to new ideas. I like how critical thinking and self-reflection is encouraged in the classroom.

―Anastasiarising junior from China

Wondering about campus life in the summer?

Explore Residential Life