Admissions


How to apply

Families interested in their students’ participation in the program must complete an online application. Please note that there are four parts: 

  • Part 1- Parent Information and Waiver: Must be filled out by a custodial parent or legal guardian.
  • Part 2- Student Application: Must be filled out by the student interested in participating.
  • Part 3- Teacher Recommendation: The student must provide the name and contact information (email address and phone number) of a seventh- or eighth-grade science, math, or technology teacher who will be submitting a recommendation on the student’s behalf.
  • Part 4- Guidance Counselor Recommendation/Academic Records: The student must provide the name, email address, and phone number of the guidance counselor who will be submitting a recommendation of the student and the student’s academic records. Make sure to give the teacher and guidance counselor sufficient time to complete their portions of the application by asking at the beginning of the application process.

When to apply

For Summer 2024, the online application will be available starting December 1, 2023. The online application portal will close on February 8, 2024. Students do not have to complete the entire application in one session. 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.

Part 1: Parent/Guardian Information

If this is the first time logging into the application system, the parent/guardian must first set up log-in credentials. Once logged in, the parent/guardian will be asked to provide contact information, emergency contact information, and information about the student, as well as agree to the terms and conditions. 

Part 2: Student Application

After the first part of the application is complete, while logged in using the parent/guardian’s credentials, students will be asked to provide demographic information and answer these short answer and essay questions. 

Short Answer Questions

1. List any academic extracurricular activities in which you have participated in or are currently participating in. Examples include clubs, Math Counts, Science Olympiad, precollege programs, etc. *Response should only include what you have participated in while in 6th, 7th, and/or 8th grades.

2. List any non-academic extracurricular activities in which you have participated in or are currently participating in. Examples include church activities, hobbies, sports, etc.
*Response should only include what you have participated in while in 6th, 7th, and/or 8th grades.

3. List any volunteer work you have done.
*Response should only include what you have participated in while in 6th, 7th, and/or 8th grades.

4. List any awards and/or recognitions you have received.
*Response should only include awards and recognitions you have received in 6th, 7th, and/or 8th grades.

Essay Questions

Responses should be 100-300 words.

1. Think about the clubs and activities in which you participate. Describe why you joined these activities and what you enjoy most about your participation with these groups.

2. Tell us why you want to attend Step Up to STEM. How do you think you would benefit from attending this program?

3. What is your favorite STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) subject? What do you like about it?

4. What are you looking forward to studying in high school and college? Why? Describe your future goals or aspirations.

Teacher / Counselor Recommendations and Academic Records

Applicants must ask a teacher to complete the teacher recommendation form, a counselor to complete a questionnaire, and their school to send in academic records. Details and email request templates can be found here.

Part 3: Teacher Recommendations
Part 4: Counselor Recommendations and Academic Records

Official school transcripts can be submitted in one of the following ways:

Key Dates for Summer 2024

December 1, 2023: Application portal opens

January 11, 2024: Step Up to STEM at ECSU Virtual Information Session:

Register Here: https://forms.gle/mA2KgVPUy3M4eQC29

January 18, 2024: Step Up to STEM at NCSSM-Durham Virtual Information Session:

Register Here: https://forms.gle/rAngys9eW7kcbwr98

February 8, 2024: Application portal closes

March 13, 2024: Acceptance decisions emailed

March 27, 2024: Deadline for acceptance contracts to be submitted

June 16-21, 2024: Cohort 2 (NCSSM-Durham)

July 7-12, 2024: Cohorts 1 and 2 (ECSU)

July 14-19, 2024: Cohort 1 (NCSSM-Durham)

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

https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0F4AA9A92BA0FEC16-45969057-step

December 7, 2024: 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
January 25, 2024: 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Program Director, NCSSM-Durham

Letitia Hubbard

Instructor of Engineering and Mentorship

919-416-2839

Program Director, ECSU

Step Up to STEM

stepup@ncssm.edu

919-416-2784

Gerri Cole

Associate Director of STEM Outreach, Equity, and Engagement

919-416-2784