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students gathered outside on puyallup campus

Step 1: Admissions

Complete a Pierce College application. Select Pierce College Fort Steilacoom (even if you plan to attend the Puyallup campus) and select Running Start applicant.

Step 2: Placement Assessment

College level placement in English is required for Running Start participation. You may complete the Guided Self-Placement process or provide alternative placement documents (Smarter Balanced Assessment Scores or placement reciprocity from another Washington community college) for placement consideration. Within three business days (higher during peak time), our Testing and Placement Centers will provide you with proof of your Running Start eligibility to share with your high school counselor via email.

Step 3: Meet with Your High School Counselor

Complete a Running Start Enrollment Verification Form (EVF) with your high school counselor. Private school and homeschool students must enroll through the public high school they would be otherwise be attending and have a counselor at the public high school complete the EVF. Refer to the public school district contact list for enrollment information and EVF.

Step 4: Get Connected

If you have not already done so, log in to MyPierce to set up your student email and complete the New Student Guide and Intake Form. After you’ve finished the guide, Advising staff will contact you via email or phone to schedule your advising appointment.

Step 5: Register and Pay

After meeting with a Pierce College advisor, you are ready to register for classes after registration opens. Running Start students pay student and course fees each quarter after registering. See the Fees page for more information on quarterly fees and other expenses not covered by Running Start.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Running Start student tuition must be adjusted by the college each quarter.

AFTER tuition has been adjusted, payment can be made; be sure to pay by the quarterly deadline to avoid being dropped for non-payment (if tuition has not been adjusted several days before the payment deadline, please contact Running Start).

Pay in person at the Cashier’s Office. Or, pay online with our simple pay system.