Summer Start FAQs

Below is a list of the most common questions we receive in our office. If you do not see your question, please feel free to visit our Contact Page and reach out directly.

What is Summer Start?

Purdue Summer Start is an award-winning program designed to maximize student potential. Our students are collaborative, innovative, and determined, and they strive to be self-motivated. They are also willing to embrace new challenges and opportunities with a growth mindset. Individualized support begins in the summer and lasts through graduation. Students become familiar with campus resources, professors, other students, and the ins and outs of college before most students return to campus for the fall semester - all while earning credit towards their degree. This program reinforces the five Steps to Leaps pillars

What are the benefits of Summer Start?
  • Potentially be on track to graduate early. Students who use summer classes to graduate one year early net an average of more than $54,000 compared to peers who graduate in four years.
  • Participate in fun learning community activities throughout the academic year and be a member of a supportive environment that facilitates a sense of campus belonging.
  • Be surrounded by a unique team of support. The team includes peer (upper class) mentors, success coaches, academic advisors, resident assistants, college representatives, and more.
  • Fully engage in various activities throughout the first year to maximize potential as a well-rounded student while also earning up to $1,000 in scholarship money applied to their tuition, fees, and/or other expenses. 
  • Be part of an award-winning program. NASPA, the world's largest student affairs organization, named Summer Start as the 2020 recipient of the Promising Practices Award.  Summer Start also received the 2020 John N. Gardner Institutional Excellence for Students in Transition Award from the National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition.
  • Participating in Summer Start is your gateway to earning a degree from the top-ranked university in the State of Indiana! 
Who can be in Summer Start?

Students receive an invitation to start during summer as part of the admissions process. Students who are admitted for Fall 2023 may opt to participate in a similar program called Early Start.  If you have questions, please contact us at

What are the dates?

The five-week Summer Start session spans July 10-August 11, 2023. Move-in will occur on Friday, July 7th and a free mandatory orientation program will span from Friday, July 7th through Sunday, July 9th. The mandatory orientation experience will not replace Boiler Gold Rush (BGR), which is optional. Check out our important dates and deadlines page for more information.

Where will I live?

You and other students enrolled in the program will live on-campus and participate in the Catalyst Learning Community throughout the academic year. You will have air conditioning! You are strongly encouraged to sign and complete your  housing contracts by the April 15 priority deadline. You must accept your offer of admission no later than April 11 to ensure your information is processed through the system in time and both contracts are available to you.  Students may rush for fraternities, sororities, and co-ops. Check out our housing page for more information.

How much does it cost?

There is no additional fee for Summer Start - you simply pay the traditional cost for tuition, fees, housing, and a meal plan. You can find this information on the Costs and Aid page.

Which courses will I take?

You will be enrolled in eight credits during the program, which equates to two 90-minute classes Monday-Friday, a precalculus preparation course, and one freshman seminar course that will meet three times each week for 50 minutes. You can read more by  clicking here .

What happens if I’m not successful in my Summer Start courses?

Students typically outperform the University. If you happen to experience academic difficulty during your Summer Start courses, you will be able to register for and attend fall classes. You will also receive help from our qualified faculty and staff to get back on track. Performance in fall and spring coursework will be subject to  Purdue’s probation policy.

Can I have a job while doing Summer Start?

We highly discourage trying to maintain employment during the five-week Summer Start session. Completing eight college credits for the first time in a compressed format is a difficult task, but one that you can do if utilizing the resources available and the time structured around class to study. However, given the fact that you are on campus five weeks earlier than the rest of Purdue students, you will have time to find and secure a fall employment opportunity. Check out this website for links to popular on-campus employment sites. 

Do I need to register for All Aboard Purdue and/or BGR?

You are required to attend the All Aboard Purdue. This is the program that will allow you to meet your academic advisor and plan classes (summer and fall).  You are also expected to register yourself for  Boiler Gold Rush (BGR) – Purdue’s orientation week that takes place between the end of Summer Start and the beginning of fall courses.

Can I have my car on campus?

During Summer Start, yes you can have a car. You will need to park in residence hall parking lots with white signs - we will point out specific parking lots during orientation - and you can also pay to park at meters across campus.  However, you cannot park in A, B, or C spots without a permit.  As for the fall and spring semesters, you will have to meet certain criteria in order to apply for parking permit. More information can be found here.

Will I have help after Summer Start is over?

Yes! Purdue’s Academic Success Center will be there for you to provide Supplemental Instruction (SI) and your success coach will be available throughout your time at Purdue. Why should you attend SI during the fall and spring semesters?  On average, 95% of students who attended SI sessions regularly (8 or more times) earned a C or better in the course. About half of those students earned an A or B. 89% of students also believed their course grade would have been lower if they did not attend SI. SI is extremely beneficial for courses such as biology, chemistry, and mathematics, especially calculus. 

Check out the additional academic support available during the academic year.  

How do I pay for tuition?

You can pay online at the  Bursar's Office website . More information can be found on our Costs and Aid page.

Who do I contact with other questions?

Please call us at 765-496-7193 or email us at 

Admissions Checklist

Purdue University, 610 Purdue Mall, West Lafayette, IN 47907, (765) 494-4600

© 2015 Purdue University | An equal access/equal opportunity university | Copyright Complaints | Maintained by Office of the Provost

Trouble with this page? Disability-related accessibility issue? Please contact Office of the Provost at