Running Start Admissions

High school students ready for the Running Start program will amplify their futures and save a lot of money toward a college degree.

Two students walk and talk on a campus sidewalk, greenery around

Steps to Enroll

First, you need to decide if Running Start is a good fit for you. Start by watching our Running Start Information Video and then attend an upcoming Q&A Session if you have any follow-up questions. Scroll to the bottom of this page to see the upcoming Q&A Session dates.

Looking for summer info? Visit the Summer Running Start page >

Submit a free admissions application online. It can take up to 10 business days to process your application.

Important privacy note: The application should be completed by the student, not a parent. Learn about Parent Access to Student Records on our Dual Credit Programs Parent Access & Grades page.

Students should use a personal or family email address. Please do not use your high school email address. The K12 firewalls generally block incoming emails and you may not receive admissions confirmation from SPSCC.

Apply for Admission

When your application has been processed, you’ll receive an acceptance email with your ctcLink ID. Use your ctcLink ID to activate your two student accounts.

1. Activate your ctcLink account
2. Activate your ClipperID (SPSCC email and password)

Activate Your Student Accounts

To be eligible for Running Start, you must place into (or have completed) English 101. 

If you have acceptable documentation, we can place you directly into English 101. Please see the Running Start Placement Guide below for more information and submit your documents to the Placement Request Form for evaluation.

Documents are evaluated and placement posted within one business day. If you do not have any documentation to submit you can take the English Guided Self Placement (GSP) online. It is free and can be completed any time after you activate your SPSCC student email account. Results will be available as soon as you finish and will post to your account the next business day. Please see the Assessment Center page for more information about the English GSP.

Math Placement

Math placement is not required to participate as a Running Start student, but is required if you are going to complete a degree at SPSCC or want to take a course with a math prerequisite.

If you have acceptable documentation, we can place you directly into a variety of college level math classes. Please see the Running Start Placement Guide for more information and submit your documents to the Placement Request Form for evaluation.

Want to know more about what documents you can use or exams you can take?

Contact the SPSCC Assessment Center or join one of our Running Start Q&A Information Sessions. Students, along with a parent or guardian, are encouraged to attend.

Meet with your high school counselor or school district representative to discuss your graduation requirements and fill out the Running Start Enrollment Verification Form. Your Counselor will help you decide how many classes to complete at the high school and how many credits to complete at SPSCC. Using the High School Course Equivalency List (see link at the bottom of these steps) for your school or district can be a great tool to help you plan out what to take!

Generally, students can take up to 15 credits at the college and up to 2 classes at the high school each quarter. How many credits a student can take tuition paid at the college is determined by the number of classes they are enrolled in at the high school.

If students wish to have credit to use during the summer, they will need to plan carefully with their high school counselor and college Educational Planner to make sure they do not max out their credit allotment prior to summer.

In order to register for classes, all students must complete New Student Orientation. This can be done in person or online.

Click here to get started: New Student Orientation

You can view the SPSCC Class Schedule before registration to start picking out your classes.

Note: Students register for classes owing full tuition and fees. This is adjusted once the Running Start Enrollment Verification form is submitted.

You must turn in the Running Start Enrollment Verification Form every quarter in order for SPSCC to adjust your tuition and fees.

Your high school counselor or district representative needs to sign the RS Verification Form before you submit it to SPSCC. If the form is not complete, it will not be processed.

Submit the RS Verification Form:

  • In-person at the Start Here Counter on the Olympia Campus, Building 22, 2nd Floor.
  • In-person at the One Stop on the Lacey Campus, Building 1.
  • Via email to

Pay Fees or Complete Fee Waiver

Fees and the costs of books and supplies are not covered through the Running Start program. Fees must be paid by the tuition due date each quarter.

Pay Fees

Students with a qualifying financial need can participate in the Fee Waiver & Book Borrow Program.

Fee Waiver & Book Borrow Information

Pay Tuition Beyond Program Limits

Your Running Start Verification Form tells us how many college credits of tuition can be covered by Running Start. There are three instances where a Running Start student will be responsible for paying tuition beyond the program limits:

  1. A student enrolls in a course under the 100 level or enrolls in and AMATH or CMATH course.
  2. A student enrolls in credit over the maximum allowed on their verification form.
  3. If at any time during the quarter a student increases their enrolled classes at the high school beyond what was on the original Verification Form for that quarter.

Important Dates & Deadlines

Starting quarter Spring 2024 Summer 2024 Fall 2024 Winter 2025
Recommended to Apply to SPSCC Jan. 2024 March 2024 March 2024 Oct. 2024
Admissions Deadline March 25, 2024 June 24, 2024 Sept. 9, 2024 Dec. 23, 2024
Submit Placement Documents or Complete Testing Jan.-Feb. 2024 March-April 2024 March-April 2024 Oct.-Nov. 2024
Class Schedule Online Jan. 2024 April 2024 April 2024 Oct. 2024
New Student Registration Begins Feb. 26, 2024 May 28, 2024 May 28, 2024 Nov. 2024
Running Start Verification Form Due^ March 19, 2024 June 18, 2024 Sept. 3, 2024 Dec. 2024
Tuition Due Date+ 
Fees must be paid or fee waiver approved
March 19, 2024 June 18, 2024 Sept. 3, 2024 Dec. 2024
First Day of Classes April 8, 2024 July 8, 2024 Sept. 23, 2024 Jan. 6, 2025


*For more information about summer quarter funding, please see our Summer Running Start page.

^Failure to submit the verification form and pay applicable fees will result in the student being subject to the SPSCC Drops for Nonpayment policy. If a student applies and registers for classes after the verification form due date, the form must be submitted and fees paid prior to the first day of the quarter.

+Running Start students are responsible for all mandatory fees, class fees, and any miscellaneous fees as well as tuition on courses including pre-college content and/or tuition on credits over the funding limits. Tuition and fees owed are calculated once the Running Start Verification form is processed by SPSCC. Students who qualify will have a Fee Waiver applied to their account.

Running Start Calendar