Starting your journey as a new college student may feel both exciting and overwhelming, especially in a time when the world is unpredictable and chaotic. Our Rise Scholars program provides comprehensive resources that help kick-start your entry to college and guide you through your entire first year—academically, financially, and emotionally.

Earn Your First Year of College Tuition-Free

Admitted Students

Request more information

Admitted Students

Apply Here


Rise Scholar Benefits 

What is Rise Scholar and how does it work?

All full-time freshmen students who successfully complete Rise Academy are designated as Rise Scholars and receive a full tuition and fees scholarship for the academic year. It is simple to become a Rise Scholar. First, apply for undergraduate admissions. Second, attend the summer bridge course with orientation starting on June 28 and the summer class and community-building activities starting on July 6. For any questions on getting started, contact our Admissions Office at 773-995-2513 or by emailing  


Rise Academy is a year-long program designed to kick off your freshman year at Chicago State University by offering you all the tools you will need to succeed in your first year of college, including a strong community of classmates, professors, and advisors. The Academy starts with an intensive program that starts in the summer. During the summer program, you earn 3 college credits, get to know your professors and freshmen classmates; discover how different college majors lead to career paths and which is right for you; and explore the Chicago State campus and student resources.


Key Dates

Deadline to Apply to CSU & Register for Rise Academy 
Deadline to apply June 15, 2021
Rise Orientation June 28 - July 2, 2021
Rise Academy Starts July 6, 2021
Classes Start August 2021


Rise Scholars FAQ

A: All incoming full-time freshmen students, including transfer students with less than 24 credit hours, who complete Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) are eligible. Students must successfully complete the Rise Academy program.

A: 12 or more credit hours in the fall and spring semesters.

A: If you’ve already been accepted as a freshman student to Chicago State, then you just need to RSVP for one of the Rise Academy sessions this fall (start dates of September 14 and October 19).

If you have not applied to Chicago State yet, it is not too late. Apply for the Spring 2021 term here.

A: In the Rise Academy, you will participate in workshops, build relationships with classmates, explore career options and learn the “ins and outs” of college life. The program starts with a 5-week intensive course in the summer and continues throughout the academic year. 
A:  If you're not yet admitted to CSU, apply for undergraduate admissions. Once you are admitted to the university, register for Rise Academy. For any questions on getting started, contact our Admissions Office at 773-995-2513 or by emailing
A: Rise Academy is a year-long program, starting with a five-week intensive program over the summer or the fall. The exact time commitment of the five-week preparatory program varies slightly based on classes you take. Monday - Friday, there is an English course at either 8 - 12:15 or 10:30 - 12:45 and workshops in the early afternoon.
A: Students successfully completing the Rise Academy program receive first-year scholarships that cover tuition, mandatory fees, and textbook costs not covered by grants. The scholars also receive a laptop and internet access.
A:The safety and well-being of our students, faculty and staff continue to be priorities for us during this unprecedented time. Chicago State has remained open and fully operational; however, we are offering the five-week intensive preparatory program in an e-learning format. We are providing students with laptops for that purpose. We will plan a socially-distanced campus welcome and orientation, in accordance with state and city re-opening phases, so that you can experience our beautiful campus in person and meet your professors, advisors and classmates.

A: You can contact the program director, Ms. Ochoa, with any questions (