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Accelerate Overview

Delivered by the South Carolina Governor’s School for Science & Mathematics and its college partners, Accelerate is a virtual engineering program that allows students to live at home and continue at their local schools while taking high-quality online courses in mathematics, science, engineering, and English.  Accelerate classes are live, not pre-recorded, and are presented virtually through computer and teleconferencing equipment that is provided and maintained by GSSM.

Participation in the Accelerate program is not suitable for all students. In addition to exceptional ability in mathematics and science, students should possess a strong interest in engineering, problem-solving, and teamwork. Students must take all courses that Accelerate requires for their grade level and must maintain academic excellence throughout the program.

In addition to their coursework, students must attend week-long summer camps before their 10th-, 11th-, and 12th-grade years. Attendance is also required at one Saturday Experience per academic year and at Saturday labs during all three years of enrollment in the program. More information about Saturday Experiences, Summer Experiences, and Saturday labs can be found by following the links in this sentence.

Academic conduct or performance deemed unsatisfactory by GSSM or Accelerate can result in a student’s dismissal from Accelerate at any time during the program.  Prior to their entrance into the program, students and their parents are required to read and sign a copy of the program’s Honor Code.  Any violations of the Honor Code can result in removal from the program.

Application Prerequisites

To be eligible for admission to Accelerate, students must

  • Be a current resident of the state of South Carolina.  Proof of residency is required at the time of applying.
  • Be enrolled in the 9th grade at the time of submitting an application.
  • Attend high school in one of Accelerate’s partner districts or at one of the program’s partner schools.
  • Have completed Algebra I prior to the beginning of 9th grade.
  • Have completed or be on track to complete Algebra II by the end of 9th grade.
  • Have a working email address, which they (or their parents) check frequently.*

*Because Accelerate primarily communicates with applicants via email, students must have an email address. We strongly recommend that you supply us with at least two email addresses, one for the student and a different one for the parent, so that we may contact you in a timely fashion. Please do not use a student’s school or district email address; these email providers often block emails from outside the school or district. Free email providers, such as Gmail or Yahoo, are good alternatives. Emails from GSSM will come from @gssm.k12.sc.us or from @scgssm.org.

Application Components

To complete the Accelerate application process, students must create an application account and follow the instructions for completing the application process.  All applications must be submitted online.  If you have difficulties or questions during the application process, please contact us at admissions@gssm.k12.sc.us.  

Prior to submitting an application, students must collect, prepare, and compile certain documents.  These documents include the following:

  • Proof of South Carolina residency
  • Acknowledgements and Permissions Form signed by the applicant and his or her parent(s)
  • Standardized Test Optional: Due to the unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19 official standardized test scores are optional. For more information on our test optional policy, please visit our test optional page.
  • High-school transcript with first-semester grades and a list of second-semester courses
  • School counselor evaluation
  • Math teacher evaluation
  • Science teacher evaluation
  • English teacher evaluation
  • Math Assessment-required to be completed by all applicants for consideration into the Accelerate program. The Virtual Enrollment Counselor, Meghan Terry, will work with applicants to schedule the math assessment during the process.

Join Us For a Virtual Program Information Meeting

A representative from the Virtual Program will be hosting information sessions in all partner school districts. We hope you can join us to learn more about this amazing opportunity! Dates, locations, and times are being added regularly.

Click here for dates!

Nondiscrimination Statement

The South Carolina Governor's School for Science & Mathematics does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, age, sex, or disability in admission to, treatment in, or employment in its programs and activities. Inquiries regarding nondiscrimination policies should be made to Ms. Anne Brumley, Governor's School for Science & Mathematics, 401 Railroad Ave, Hartsville, SC 29550, 843-383-3906. For further information on federal nondiscrimination regulations, including Title IX, contact the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights at OCR.DC@ed.gov or call (800) 421-3481.