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Academic Success Program



"It's amazing and I wouldn't take it back for anything because now, as I'm entering in the fall, I can do anything."
-- Bridget W, ASP Student

Western Carolina University offers the Academic Success Program (ASP) as an opportunity for students to begin their college experience early and to prepare them for success in college and beyond. This program is designed to provide a full year of support to facilitate a successful first-year experience and to help students develop skills to excel in their college career.  It helps motivate them to set higher goals in school and in life and holds them accountable for demonstrating attitudes and behaviors that coincide with reaching their goals.

ASP is a conditional admission program in that students who are invited to participate MUST successfully complete a 5-week (June 26th - July 28th, 2023) intensive summer program. Students are enrolled in to seven credit hours of courses, all of which count toward graduation, and participate academic, social, and transitional support events, workshops, and seminars. The highly structured learning community environment is designed to guide and support students as they prepare for and transition in to their first college experience.

Check our Frequently Asked Questions page 

Financial aid--including federal aid--may apply to ASP! Fill out your 2022-2023 FAFSA to receive consideration for financial aid.

  • Get a jump-start on your major, or earn liberal studies requirements
  • Connect with other students and make friends
  • Earn 7 credits toward graduation in just five weeks
  • Receive individual support from the Writing and Learning Commons and Math Tutoring Center
  • Be matched with a high-achieving peer mentor
  • Learn the ins and outs of the university process during the slower-paced summer session
  • Go on a field trip within your learning community: last year's trips included trips to the Duke Energy Center, the Cherokee Heritage Museum, and a float down the French Broad River
  • Build relationships with key faculty and staff members who will continue to support you throughout your time at the University
  • Enjoy the local community and adventure opportunities the mountains of Western North Carolina provides during the summer

“Keep doing what you are doing because I loved everything about it!”

“It was one of the best experiences ever!”

“y'all did excellent. Thanks so much…”

What was your most enjoyable experience in the Summer?

  • "The flexibility of a schedule and having a sense of freedom.”
  • "Meeting new friends that I will have in the fall"
  • "Going to hike a waterfall"
  • "The laughs"
  • "Meeting new people and learning new things with them."
  • "Going hiking and water rafting"
  • "making memories with new friends"

If you like numbers, check out some of our survey results concerning the Summer:

  • 97% I am excited to return to WCU for the fall semester
  • 94% I am confident in my ability to succeed academically at WCU
  • 94% I will use academic skills presented during ASP during my career at WCU
  • 94% My faculty engaged me in the learning process
  • 95% I will use academic support resources available at WCU during my career at WCU
  • 91% I had support from WCU faculty and staff during the ASP
  • 85% said they developed meaningful relationships with their professors.
  • 85% said they would recommend a friend attend a summer learning community (like ASP)
  • 94% said at ASP, I learned about time management skills
  • 88% At ASP, I learned about goal setting
  • 91% At ASP, I learned about self-care tips; managing physical and mental health

Students take a freshman seminar, a liberal studies course, and a transition course. More in-depth information about the structure of ASP, including a typical schedule, can be found on our Summer Academic Structure page!

  • Move-in: Wednesday, June 21, 2023 (late move-in is allowed on June 22 morning for special circumstances)
  • WCU Orientations: Thursday and Friday, June 22 and 23, 2023
  • MAPS Orientation: Saturday, June 24, 2023
  • Classes begin: Monday, June 26, 2023
  • Classes end: Friday, July 28, 2023
  • Closing Ceremony and Move-out: Saturday, July 29, 2023
  • Fall Classes begin: Monday, August 21, 2023

For more information, please check our Frequently Asked Questions page or contact our office.

What Former ASP Students are Saying

Mack Long

Bridget Wright

Brandon Rice

Ready to Enroll?

Please follow these easy steps to sign up for ASP Summer:

  1. Review the frequently asked questions page.
  2. Complete the 2023 ASP Participation Agreement AND Activities Events Waiver Form.
  • Read the ASP Participation Agreement carefully. This is a contract you are making with the university. We will hold you to the terms of this contract.
  • Scan and email both forms to

!! Pictures from your mobile device will NOT work.

  • Or, fax them to 828.227.7078
  • Or, mail them to:

205 Killian Annex
Western Carolina University
1 University Drive
Cullowhee, NC 28723

3. If you have disability accommodations from high school or a documented disability, please register with the Office of Accessibility Resources.

4. You might have filled out the 2023-2024 FAFSA for your potential Fall enrollment which will apply to Fall 2023, Spring 2024, and Summer 2024. If you would like to apply for financial aid for the summer ASP Program, please fill out the 2022-2023 FAFSA which will provide funding for Summer 2023.

Finally, please follow these steps to finish applying to WCU:

  1. Before you begin, look at the WCU Admission Checklist to get your bearings.
  2. Then, refer to the Admitted Students site and follow the step-by-step instructions (if you have not done so already).
  3. Finally, you will log in to your MyWCU account, the same account you used to apply to continue the admission process. Log onto MyWCU using your 9-2 number (student ID number) which you will find in your acknowledgment letter.
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