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 led by Washington University instructors from across campus disciplines and research fields will 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. In addition to course work, High School Summer Launch students participate in specialized college readiness, community building, and academic support activities.

Learn more about our enrichment activities


High School Summer Launch is a one-week program from July 10-16, 2022.


To be eligible for High School Summer Launch students should:

  • Be a current freshman or sophomore in high school (graduating in 2024 or 2025).
  • As an international student, have a TOEFL score of at least 90. 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.

COVID-19 Information

Washington University is taking significant measures to protect the community from COVID-19. Visit WashU Together for more information on WashU's COVID-19 response. We are planning to host in-person programming for the 2022 summer based on current University guidelines. If you are interested in an online experience, please see our online Exploration Courses.

As a condition of employment, enrollment, and/or access to Washington University and affiliated facilities, all University employees, students, and trainees must be immunized by vaccination against COVID-19 unless granted a medical or religious exemption from the University. 

Fees and Scholarships

The 2022 program fee for High School Summer Launch is $1,285. Need-based scholarship assistance is available. Children of Washington University 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 Washington University. 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.

Participation in High School Summer Launch does not guarantee acceptance into undergraduate or graduate programs at Washington University.

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 2022 Program Schedule

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 score report.

The deadline to submit an application and all supplemental information is April 1, 2022 at 11:59pm CT.

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

The application process for the 2022 High School Summer Launch has closed. Applications for the 2023 High School Summer Launch will open November 1.