Eligibility Requirements

Students must meet the following eligibility requirements to apply:

  • Must live within the state of North Carolina
  • Must be a current 10th grader (Note: Students will participate in the program in the summer as rising 11th graders).
  • Students may apply to INSPIRE, as well as to Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics, the NCSSM-Durham residential program, the NCSSM-Morganton residential program, and the NCSSM-online program. However, if a student is selected to attend INSPIRE and is also selected to attend one of the other above-listed programs, the student must choose which program he/she wants to attend (i.e. the student cannot attend more than one program).
  • A student who is on the waitlist for the NCSSM-Durham residential program, the NCSSM-Morganton residential program or the NCSSM-online program but is later accepted may attend INSPIRE.

Application Process

For Summer 2024, the online application will be available beginning January 8, 2024. The online application portal will close on March 8, 2024. The entire application does not have to be completed in one sitting (it is possible to return at a later time, before the application deadline, to complete it). In preparation to complete the application process, students are advised to review the process and prepare responses for the information the application requires. 

Application Components

Click here to access the application checklist.

Online Application

  • Part 1: Parent/Guardian Information (A parent/guardian must fill out the requested information and agree to the terms and conditions.)
  • Part 2: Student Application Questions/Short Answer and Essay Questions (Students must fill out the requested information, and complete short answer and essay questions.)

          Click here to view the short answer and essay questions.          

Counselor/Teacher Recommendations and Academic Records

Applicants must ask a guidance counselor to complete the counselor recommendation form, a teacher to complete the teacher recommendation form, and their school to send in their academic records. 

Counselor Recommendations 
The applicant must give his/her guidance counselor the instructions for the counselor to complete the online recommendation. 

Teacher Recommendations
The applicant must select a high school STEM teacher who has taught or is currently teaching him/her to provide a recommendation. The applicant must give the teacher the instructions in order for the teacher to complete the online recommendation.

Academic Records
The counselor (or registrar) will also need to send a copy of the applicant’s academic records to the INSPIRE Program. The applicant’s academic records must include the 9th grade report card (entire academic year), the 10th grade report card (first semester only), and cumulative GPA (weighted and unweighted). Official school transcripts should be uploaded to the application portal or mailed (postmarked by March 8, 2024) to:

Attention: Dr. Gerri Cole
1219 Broad Street
Durham, NC 27705

Key Dates for Summer 2024

Jan. 8, 2024: Application portal opens
Feb. 15, 2024: INSPIRE Virtual Information Session (7 p.m.)
March 8, 2024: Application portal closes
March 28, 2024: Acceptance notifications emailed
April 11, 2024: Deadline for acceptance contracts to be submitted
June 23-28, 2024: INSPIRE @ NCSSM-Morganton

INSPIRE Virtual Office Hours: The purpose of the INSPIRE Virtual Office Hours is to answer any questions that parents, students, and/or educators may have about the INSPIRE application process. Click below to sign up for a 15-minute time slot during one of the dates/times listed below.

January 16, 2024: 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
March 5, 2024: 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Contact Us

Gerri Cole

Associate Director of STEM Outreach, Equity, and Engagement