SCC Running Start

Running Start

Spokane Community College’s Running Start program provides eligible high school students the opportunity to simultaneously earn high school and college credit. This tuition free (up to 15 credits) program allows students to pursue advanced academic content, and enroll in courses that may not be offered at their high school. Students can choose to enroll high school and college courses, or solely college courses. Classes taken at the college as part of the SCC Running Start program are limited to "college-level" classes, meaning 100 level or above.

How does Running Start work?

Students can take Running Start classes beginning their junior year in high school if they achieve college-ready scores on the college placement test. Students can stay in high school and attend college part-time, or attend college full-time. Classes are limited to "college-level courses" - that is, classes numbered 100 and higher.

Credits earned at SCC centers are transferable to all Washington State public colleges and universities. Private and out-of-state schools also may accept Running Start transfer credits. Each receiving institution has its own requirements, so it's important to understand the specific transfer policies of the school(s) you are interested in attending.

What are the benefits of Running Start?

While in Running Start, students and their families can save thousands in tuition dollars and reach educational goals sooner. Students can take challenging classes not offered at their high schools to advance their education. Students who choose their classes wisely earn credits that transfer to four-year colleges and universities.

What are the challenges of Running Start?

College classes are more demanding and require more study time than high school classes. Students must still fulfill all high school graduation requirements. Students must pay for books and transportation.

Will my credits transfer to my future university?

The four-year college or university ultimately decides which classes it accepts. However, we’ve helped thousands of students transfer over the years, and we’re pretty good at it. Take the right classes and transfer to a Washington university and most students will be in good shape. Planning on transferring to a private university? Contact them before registering for classes!

How are my credits calculated for high school graduation?

Completed college classes can earn both high school and college credit. One five-credit class at the college equals one high school credit. Graduation requirements are established by each high school. Students must consult with their high school counselors each quarter to determine course equivalency for graduation requirements.

Tuition for Spokane Community College Running Start is paid by the state through the public school district up to a maximum of 15 credits, depending on the student’s combined high school and college class load. The number of credit hours in high school and the number of credits taken at the college must add up to 1.2 FTE. The college credits must be 100 level or above in order to qualify for free tuition.

SCC Running Start students are responsible for any admission, technology, lab, or other associated course fees. Additionally, SCC Running Start students are responsible for purchasing their course textbooks and a new parking pass each quarter.

Please refer to the SCC Important Dates Calendar to view application deadlines.

  • Complete the online SCC application and select Running Start.
  • Once your application has been processed, you will receive a ctcLink ID from Admissions in your email. Make note of your ctcLink ID, as it will be needed to access your information from the college.
  • In approximately 3-5 business days, you will be sent a Running Start welcome letter.

There are two ways to assess whether high school students are ready for college level course work. Applicants to the program will be evaluated in one of the following ways:

Transcript Evaluation

Students with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher are automatically eligible for Running Start. Students who do not meet the 3.0 GPA can either provide one of the following test scores, or contact the SCC Testing Center at (509) 533-7074 to schedule a writing assessment.

GPA Route

  • You must bring or send a copy of your High School Transcript to the Running Start Center (Building 15, Room 122):

    Spokane Community College
    Running Start
    1810 N. Greene St.
    Spokane WA 99217

  • Once your transcript has been evaluated, a letter concerning your eligibility for the program will be sent to your mail address (allow 1-2 weeks for processing). If your eligibility letter is not received 2 weeks from the day your transcript was sent, contact the Running Start Center at (509) 533-8009.
  • For questions concerning transcript evaluation, contact the Running Start Center at (509) 533-8009.

Alternative forms of eligibility

  • SAT score of 470 or higher
  • ACT score of 18 or higher
  • Smarter Balance score of 3 or higher
  • Schedule a Writing Assessment with the SCC Testing Center at (509) 533-7074

Writing Assessment

Students with a cumulative GPA below 3.0, and do not have alternative test score, must schedule a writing assessment with the SCC Testing Center at (509) 533-7074.

  • Once you have received your SID, schedule a writing assessment.
  • Prior to taking the writing assessment, a $30.00 testing fee must be paid to the Cashier's Office in person, over the phone, online, or by mail (keep your receipt).
    • Please Note: The testing fee is not waived for students on free and reduced meals.
  • On the day of the test, arrive early and bring your receipt and picture ID with you to the SCC Testing Center (Building 16, Room 127).
  • After you have completed the Writing Assessment, you will be notified via email regarding your eligibility.

Other Helpful Information

  • ALEKS math placement test is not required to determine eligibility for the Running Start Program. However, if you plan to obtain a degree, or register for courses that require math as a prerequisite, you will need to take the ALEKS placement test. Refer to the Testing Center site for more information about the ALEKS placement test.
  • If a student has taken Pre-Calculus at the high school and passed both semesters with a "B" or better, they may use the Pre-Calculus Agreement instead of taking the ALEKS placement test (Course placement will be determined by the SCC Testing Center).

Students must receive confirmation of eligibility from Running Start before scheduling a New Student Orientation.

  • Schedule a New Student Orientation online (required); you will be blocked from registering for classes until you have attended one.
  • Meet with your High School Counselor to complete an Enrollment Verification Form. The High School Counselor will provide the form to the student.
  • When attending the NSO, make sure to pay for parking.
  • Arrive to the NSO 30 minutes early for check in, please ensure your EVF is submitted to the Register’s Office at least 24 hours prior to attending the NSO.
  • Important information regarding class registration, academic plans, and your responsibilities as a Running Start student will be covered in the NSO.
WSU Spokane: Becki Meehan
(509) 358-7630
WSU Pullman: Randi A. Roberts
Assistant Director of Admissions
WSU Tri-Cities: Gaby Corona
Admissions/Transfer Counselor
2710 Crimson Way Richland, WA 99354-1671
P: (509) 372-7250; F: (509) 372-7200
Direct: (509) 372-7221

School FA Code: 003800
EWU Admissions Advisors
Phone: (509) 359-2397

EWU Transfer Center
Phone: (509) 359-7963

School FA Code: 003775
Gonzaga Counselor
Joan Sarles
Engineering Advisor
(509) 313-5757
Gonzaga Counselor
Audrey Minton
Admissions Advisor
(509) 313-6579
School FA Code: 003778
Whitworth Counselor
CJ Perry
Whitworth University Transfer Counselor
(509) 777-4768
Meagan Helton
Academic Advisor
(509) 777-3222
School FA Code: 003804
Office of Admissions, Box 355852
1410 NE Campus Parkway
Univ. of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-5852
Phone: (206) 221-5416 - Fax: (206) 685-3655

School FA Code: 003798
CWU Counselor
Sydney West
(509) 963-3085

School FA Code: 003771
EVG Counselor
Meagan Daniels
Community College Relations
(360) 867-6495

School FA Code: 008155
WWU Counselor
Brent Bode
Senior Admissions Counselor & Campus Visit Manager
(360) 650-4346
School FA Code: 003802
LCSC Counselor
LC-CDA Campus:
Meghann Kolb

(208) 292-2685
LCSC Counselor
LC-CDA Campus:
Justene Garner

(208) 664-7021
School FA Code: 001621
Phone: (208) 885-6300
Fax: (208) 885-9494
Email: advising@uidaho.edu

Melissa Garrett (melissae@uidaho.edu)
Univ. of Idaho, Coeur d'Alene
1031 N. Academic Way, Suite 242
Coeur d' Alene, ID 83814-2277
Phone: (208) 292-2524

School FA Code: 001626
BYU Admissions Services
A-209 ASB
Provo, UT 84602

School FA Code: 003670
Wendy Hinand
(206) 673-8557

School FA Code: 003670
Michelle Lewis
Director, International Admission
Transfer Student Coordinator
(406) 447-5406

School FA Code: 002526



The CCS District Office maintains a comprehensive list of resources for Running Start students including:

  • Contacts
  • Enrollment Statistics for Running Start
  • Equivalency Guides
  • Forms
    • Enrollment Verification Form
    • Low Income Waiver
    • Petition for High School Diploma
  • Procedures
    • Running Start Guide (includes CCS academic calendar with drop/withdrawal dates)
    • Running Start Student Application Procedures (includes application due dates)
  • Running Start links for regional colleges, state resources and WACs (Washington Administrative Code)

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Getting Started!
    • How do I start school?
    • Consult with your high school counselor prior to applying for admission and the Running Start Program.
    • Complete the Application for Admission. You may
      • Submit it online
      • Pick up a paper application at the Admissions Office in Building 15.

        Mail it to:
        SCC Admissions,
        1810 North Greene St., MS 2151
        Spokane, WA 99217
      • Drop it off on campus at the Admissions Office in Building 15.
  • Is there a fee to apply?

    If you have never applied or attended credit classes at SCC or SFCC, there is a nonrefundable application fee. If you have previously applied and paid the fee or attended classes at either SCC or SFCC and completed one quarter, there is no fee. It is important that you apply at the college you wish to attend. If you have attended SFCC, although there is no fee, you still need to apply at SCC.

  • Is there an application deadline?

    Apply early. Information about admission application deadlines is available at our website. Running Start applications for the following quarters are processed during the indicated periods. To expedite the admissions process, and allow adequate time to deal with any complications, Running Start students are encouraged to apply prior to the beginning of the processing date.

    • Fall Quarter: December 1st through May 15th
    • Winter Quarter: October 15th through November 22nd
    • Spring Quarter: October 15th through February 14th
  • What if I attended SCC in the past and want to return?

    You need to submit a new application including any changes to your personal information. There is no fee since you are a returning student.

  • How do I know if I have met the eligibility requirements?

    Admission is based on the student meeting the college-level cut-off scores. You are eligible for college-level classes if you score into English 101 on both the Reading and Writing sections of the COMPASS test. However, students who have held a cumulative high school GPA of 3.0 or higher for three semesters do not have to take the COMPASS English Placement Test.

    **If cumulative GPA is below 3.0, see COMPASS Placement Test below. Additionally, if a student has an ACT score of 19+ or an SAT score of 470+, then they do not need to take the COMPASS exam.

    You may choose to take the mathematics portion of the test when you believe you are ready and not be charged an additional fee. You are not required to take the mathematics placement test for eligibility. Your mathematics test will determine your eligibility for college-level mathematics classes. After completing the placement test, you will be contacted in writing to inform you of your acceptance into the Running Start program.

  • How many classes may I take?

    Running Start students are limited to enrolling in 18 credits per quarter. Academic classes are typically five credits each.

  • How do the classes meet my high school graduation requirements?

    Your high school counselor will assist you in determining how the classes meet your high school graduation requirements. Ask for a course equivalency guide the next time you speak with your counselor.

  • How do I get the correct forms?
  • When may I register for classes?
    You may register for classes online after you have completed the following steps:
    • Submitted an Application for Admission by the appropriate deadline
    • Taken your placement test or qualified for ENGL& 101 by an alternate method
    • Provided SCC with a copy of your Running Start Enrollment Verification Form (EVF)
    • A Registration Access Time (you will receive this information in the mail or you can access it online.
  • What fees are Running Start students required to pay?
  • What are the regulations governing confidentiality of student records and what rights do parents have to those records?

    Running Start students have the same rights and responsibilities as other college students. Student information is confidential and may be released to a parent if a student gives permission by completing a release form. There is one exception to parental access without student consent and that involves the cases in which a parent claims the student as a dependent for income tax purposes. The parent must supply the college with proof that the student is listed as a dependent on the parent's federal income tax return.

All About Testing

  • Do I need to take an assessment test?

    YES, if:

    • You have not held an accumulative 3.0 high school GPA over the past three semester
    • Your ACT score was below 19
    • Your SAT score was below 470

    If you are required to take a placement test, you will need to pay at $30 testing fee prior to taking the exam.

  • How do I sign up for the assessment test?

    If you have submitted your Application for Admission and been assigned an EMPLID, please go to the SCC Testing homepage at SCC Testing homepage for information on scheduling your test and a study guide to help you prepare.

  • How do I prepare for the assessment test?

    You may access a COMPASS study guide at www.act.org/compass/sample. The study guide shows sample questions and answers for each of the Reading, English, and Math sections. The SCC mathematics department recommends that transfer and Running Start students take ALEKS for mathematics placement. You can access study materials for ALEKS at http://www.aleks.com/.

  • How do I know which section of math to take on the COMPASS or ALEKS test?

    Since there are four Math tests to choose from (Pre-Algebra, Algebra, College Algebra, Trigonometry) on the COMPASS, take the Math that most appropriately reflects your skill level.

    The SCC mathematics department recommends that transfer and Running Start students take ALEKS for mathematics placement which has four similar mathematics levels.

    On the day you test, you will let the testing proctor know which Math test you would like to take.

Transferring To SCC

  • What if I have attended another college?

    If you have attended a college other than SCC, including SFCC, you will need to complete a Transcript Request form. Most colleges require a fee to send transcripts. (There is no fee to request transcripts between SCC and SFCC.) If you do not plan to use the credits from your former college, you are not required to request the transcripts. Upon request, a counselor will evaluate your credits toward your degree. Please make sure your transcripts are on file with SCC, and then make an appointment with your counselor. (If you have an unofficial copy, a preliminary evaluation can be done.)

  • How will I know if SCC has received my transcripts?

    Contact the Transcript Department by phone at (509) 533-7001.

  • Will a counselor evaluate my transcripts?

    If you would like to have your transcripts reviewed, please contact your counselor. The majority of Running Start students will be working toward their AA-DTA and should be referred to the University Transfer Center.

  • How are classes from other colleges and universities applied to my AA degree at SCC?

    Your college transcripts are evaluated by an SCC transcript evaluator based on course descriptions from other accredited institutions in degree, diploma and certificate programs. Your SCC counselor can meet with you to answer questions or complete a course substitution form when you feel your previous credits will meet SCC degree requirements.

    This form is then submitted to the appropriate Dean for approval. If approved, this becomes part of your student record in the transcript office.

Financial Assistance

  • What do I need to know about financial aid?

    The Financial Aid Frequently Asked Questions Web site answers all your questions including "How, When, and How often, do I apply, what is an 'Attendance Declaration' form, and much more.

  • Can Running Start students get financial aid?

    Running Start students do not qualify for federal and state aid. Their tuition is being paid by the state of Washington. However, if a Running Start student has qualified for free and reduced lunch in the last five years through their high school district, they may have the mandatory fees that are not covered under the Running Start program waived. The student is required to provide the college with official documentation to obtain this waiver.

Getting Signed Up for Classes

Running Start General Contact Information

Email: sccrunningstart@ccs.spokane.edu
Phone: (509) 533-8154

Primary Points of Contact

Main Campus

Faculty/Staff Phone Office Email
Emily Gwinn, Dual Enrollment Recruitment Manager (509) 533-8154 15-122B Emily.Gwinn@scc.spokane.edu
Barbara Opgrand, Dual Enrollment Program Specialist (509) 533-8009 15-122A Barbara.Opgrand@scc.spokane.edu

Colville Campus

Faculty/Staff Phone Office Email
Samantha Stephens, Colville Counselor (509) 685-2125 618-0153A Samantha.Stephens@scc.spokane.edu

Newport Campus

Faculty/Staff Phone Office Email
Cornelis, Kris, Faculty (509) 279-6951 630-0110 Kris.Cornelis@scc.spokane.edu