For Prospective Scholars

Are you a current 9th grade student enrolled in a Chicago Public School and interested in joining a community of like-minded peers? Have you distinguished yourself through your academic achievements and contributions to your school and community? Then the University of Chicago Collegiate Scholars Program (UCCSP) might be the place for you. Visit our How to Apply page to learn more about how to become part of this challenging, fun, and rewarding intensive enrichment program designed to prepare talented students for academic success at the best colleges and universities.  Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information.

The Collegiate Scholars Program application for the graduating high school class of 2022 is now closed. The application for the graduating high school cclass of 2023 will be available in Fall 2019.

Spending the Summer with UCCSP!

Once accepted into the program, you start the summer after ninth grade. You’ll select from a series of classes in the humanities, the social science, arts, mathematics,  and science taught by University of Chicago faculty. For the two subsequent summers in high school, Scholars may engage in internships and/or continue course work on University of Chicago campus.

Every summer at UCCSP is packed with activities both inside and outside of the classroom; there is plenty to explore. We've had an Academic Games team, intramural sports, arts electives, field trips, College Access seminars, career roudtables and panels, social events and more! Each summer provides new opportunities to engage and have fun. All of these activities are open to scholars from the very beginning of their first summer with us. 

During the Academic Year

During the academic year, you will participate in weekend and evening activities which include civic engagement, global engagement, arts and cultural activities, career events, and college readiness workshops. You will also have the opportunity to prepare for the ACT and SAT.  Your parents will also have the opportunity to attend workshops which expound on the college search, application process, and financial aid process.

Your Senior Year

During the summer before your senior year, in addition to other courses offered by the program, you'll take College Countdown, which will help you identify colleges that will be a good fit for you, and help you prepare each aspect of your college application. By the time you return to school for your senior year, you'll be leaps and bounds ahead of most of your peers. 

What We Look For in Applicants

We accept applicants from all Chicago Public High schools. We're currently recruiting 9th grade students who will graduate from high school in 2021.   

Each year we seek a diverse group of high school freshmen to join our program. Strong applicants embody the following characteristics: 

  • Ability to Overcome Obstacles: Demonstrated perseverance when presented with a challenge; Demonstrated ability to seek and utilize resources; Demonstrated ability to think critically to solve problems
  • Commitment to Managing Short- and Long-Term Goals: Demonstrated ability to fulfill commitments and manage and prioritize time; Demonstrated ability to choose pathways that will lead to long-term success
  • Intellectual Curiosity: Demonstrated ability to handle a challenging load of courses; Demonstrated desire to learn from experiences inside and outside of the classroom; Demonstrated ability to think critically
  • Self Reflection: Demonstrated ability to learn from successes and failures; Demonstrated ability to be open to constructive feedback; Demonstrated desire to grow as a scholar and a human being
  • Unique Worldview and/or Interests: Applicant presents experiences, perspective, goals or a resume that is unique; Showcases what makes him/her/them special and stand out from the crowd