The Washington University College Prep Program’s 2020 recruitment is underway, and we’re excited to begin the application process for our incoming class, Cohort 8 Scholars! Please see the information highlighted below to learn more about program eligibility, how to nominate a student, and other important recruitment details.

NOTE: Washington University guidance around COVID-19 will determine in-person program delivery. The College Prep Program is currently practicing physical distancing and maintains connection with students through an online program curriculum.

Applying to the College Prep Program


The College Prep Program is open to students who are:

  • Currently in 9th grade and live in the St. Louis region
  • First-generation college students
  • Limited financially
  • Invested in learning and exploring educational and enrichment topics
  • Able to attend CPP’s Summer Academy for three consecutive summers, as well as attend a minimum of four Academic Programming Events per year

College Prep Scholars attend Summer Academy for two weeks following their freshman year and for three weeks following their sophomore and junior year. A number of Academic Programming Events focused on college readiness are offered throughout the year and are typically held on Saturdays for 2-4 hours, dependent upon event topic.

Summer Academy 2021 will be held June 16 – June 25.

STEP 1: Nomination

To begin the program application process, the potential student must first be nominated. After review of the nomination, application materials and next step communications are sent directly to the eligible student.

Nominations may be submitted on a student’s behalf by a teacher, counselor, faith or civic leader, community member, or a current or alumni College Prep Program scholar.

Nominate a student for the College Prep Program by October 30, 2020, 11:59PM CT. If you have any questions or issues with completing the nomination by the deadline, please contact us by email: or phone: 314-935-6317.

STEP 2: Application Invitation

Once nominations are reviewed, an application invitation and next steps will be sent directly to students who are eligible. Students submit their application online, including basic information about the student/family, and short essay responses. An official copy of the student’s high school transcript and (1) recommendation letter provided by a 7th, 8th, or 9th grade teacher/instructor must be provided on the student’s behalf.

STEP 3: Recommendation Letter

A 7th, 8th or 9th grade teacher or instructor must submit a recommendation letter on the applicant’s behalf. The teacher/instructor must have had, or currently has the student enrolled in their class or school-sponsored program. Examples of possible recommenders include a classroom teacher, counselor, principal, coach, afterschool program instructor, etc. Applicants are encouraged to request their letter of recommendation as soon as they receive invitation to apply.

Recommenders are asked to evaluate the student with respect to their academic performance/potential, character, integrity and behavior.

Online recommendations may be submitted via the College Prep website, by November 30, 2020, 11:59PM CT. The link allows you to type your recommendation response directly into the online form or to upload a PDF document via the file uploader.

NOTE: The nomination and letter of recommendation cannot be provided by the same person. Recommendation letters should be submitted only after College Prep has notified a student that they have been selected to move forward in the application process.

STEP 4: Official High School Transcript

An official copy of the applicant’s first semester high school transcript is required. Applicant families are directed to complete the form below and provide it to their high school guidance office. The completed form must accompany the first semester high school transcript and be emailed to:, by January 25, 2021.


STEP 5: Interview Invitation

After applications are reviewed, eligible students will be invited to the next round in the application process—to attend a virtual or in-person (COVID restrictions permitting) interview with College Prep Program staff. Interviews for the incoming cohort will be held Saturday February 27, 2021, 9AM – 5PM and Sunday February 28, 1PM – 5PM. Students will be notified of a scheduled interview time block for one of the listed days.

STEP 6: Enrollment Decisions

Application materials and interview notes will be considered in the Program’s enrollment decisions. Of the students interviewed, 50 will be selected to enroll in the College Prep Program’s incoming class, Cohort 8! Students will be notified by mid-March, 2021 of the enrollment decisions.

CPP Scholars make a commitment to:

  • attend CPP’s Summer Academy for three consecutive summers
  • attend a minimum of four Academic Year Programming events per year
  • follow program rules and expectations, as outlined in the scholar’s enrollment packet

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Support for the College Prep Program provided by AT&T.