Pre-baccalaureate Program

Admissions & Tuition

Admission to Wharton’s Pre-baccalaureate Program is highly selective.

Selections are based on a record of academic excellence, willingness to take on a challenge, and demonstrated intellectual curiosity. Eligibility includes:

  • Minimum 3.5 unweighted GPA, or equivalent.
  • Thoughtful, well-written essays that express interest in the program content.
  • Recommendations that convey academic performance and potential.
  • Not be graduating high school in advance of the intended entry term. (Graduated seniors are not eligible.)
  • Not be matriculating into the University of Pennsylvania as a freshman.
  • INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: Be able to verify English language proficiency.

Applications are reviewed at various points throughout the admissions cycle. Please refer to the Application Deadlines chart for timeframes on admissions notifications. Students will receive an email notification once admissions decisions are available.

Application Deadlines

Pre-baccalaureate SessionsApplication DeadlineDecisions Released
Summer 1, 2024: May 28 - July 3March 27, 2024April 17, 2024
Summer 2, 2024: July 5 - August 9May 1, 2024May 22, 2024
Fall 1, 2024: August 27 - October 8July 17, 2024July 31, 2024
Fall 2, 2024: October 21 - December 4September 11, 2024September 25, 2024
Spring 1, 2025: January 21 - March 3November 27, 2024December 11, 2024

Application Instructions

Applications and supporting materials should be submitted electronically through the online application system by the stated application deadlines. Applications will not be reviewed until all materials have been received and applications are complete.  

Applicants may use generative AI programs (e.g., tools like ChatGPT) to help generate ideas and brainstorm. However, the material generated by these programs may be inaccurate, or incomplete, and is not a compelling substitute for independent thought and lived experiences. Applicants may not submit any work generated by an AI program as their own; it should be cited like any other reference material (with due consideration for the quality of the reference.) Any plagiarism or other form of cheating will be grounds for denial.    

Please note: Wharton Global Youth contracts Summer Discovery to support administrative needs, including application processing and inquiries. However, the application platform is hosted by The Wharton School and all application reviews are conducted by the Wharton Global Youth Admissions Committee, in conjunction with Wharton faculty and staff.   

Participation in Wharton’s Pre-baccalaureate Program does not guarantee admission into Penn. 

Application Requirements


High school transcripts and/or grade reports are required for application. Please upload an unofficial copy directly into the online application system. At least two marking periods of grades are required for review. If you would like to submit additional grades as they become available, you may email supplementary application materials to


1 recommendation is required. Recommendations should be provided by a teacher, counselor, advisor, or mentor who can attest to the student’s academic performance and potential within the classroom.

Essay/Short Answer Prompts

Short essay requirements provide an opportunity for the Wharton Global Youth admissions committee to learn more about you. They are also a way to evaluate your writing skills and your ability to directly respond to a given prompt. We value quality and thoughtfulness over quantity. 

  • Tweet-style bio: In 140 characters or less, give us your biography as if it were a tweet. 
  • How will studying at Wharton advance your academic goals and/or personal growth? 200-300 words 
  • Share a meaningful anecdote or personal story that captures a defining moment in your life or a situation that significantly influenced your perspective and who you have become. Through your essay, help us understand the unique tapestry of your experiences, values, and aspirations that make you the individual you are. 300-500 words 

Application Supplements

Optional item (not required): Applicants may attach an additional letter of recommendation, certificate, resume, CV, article, etc. Materials may also be emailed to

English Proficiency Test Scores

Non-native English speakers should submit test scores to verify English language proficiency. If the student attends a high school where the primary language of instruction is English, this requirement is automatically waived. If submitting test scores, please note the admissions committee prefers TOEFL or IELTS scores, when available. The minimum TOEFL score required for admission is 100 (iBT.) The minimum IELTS score required is a 7. If TOEFL or IELTS scores are not available, applicants may submit Duolingo, PSAT, SAT, or ACT scores as an alternate. The minimum Duolingo score required is 130. To submit, please upload an unofficial copy of your score report to the online application.

Standardized Test Scores

The submission of standardized test scores is optional. If you have score reports you wish to share you may upload an unofficial copy of your score report to the online application. Score reports should include your name.

Application Fee

A non-refundable application fee of $100 is required for application. This is payable by credit card directly through the application system.  

School District of Philadelphia public and charter high school students may request an application fee waiver by contacting

Tuition & Fees

Pre-baccalaureate course tuition$4,230/course
Online Service Fee$78 per course
Materials Fee$76 per applicable course*

*Only for applicable courses. Covers exclusive content, simulations, or case studies utilized within the course.

Tuition waived for City of Philadelphia public or charter high school students

Students attending a School District of Philadelphia public or charter high school are eligible to attend one course per session on a tuition-free basis. Please use referral code PHILLY within the Referral Code section of the application.

If you attend a Philadelphia public/charter school and believe you have been billed erroneously, please contact us at so we can triage.

Course tuition and fees are calculated in the same manner as all other non-degree undergraduate students at the Wharton School. Tuition is charged per course, the online services fee is charged per course, and a materials fee is assessed for certain courses requiring the use of exclusive content or materials. Courses requiring a materials fee are clearly labeled as such.

In addition to tuition and fees, all students are financially responsible for any other fees associated with attending courses, which may include textbooks or readings, technology requirements, additional course materials, etc.

Pre-baccalaureate students are billed directly by the University Bursar and payment may be made electronically through the Penn.Pay billing system. Billing statements are issued directly to your Wharton email address.

Technical Requirements

In order to fully participate in Pre-baccalaureate coursework, students will need a computer that meets the minimum system requirements for both Canvas LMS and Zoom Videoconferencing.

All courses include live weekly, synchronous class sessions; be sure to review full course details for meetings days and times. All course times are based on the time in Philadelphia, PA USA (Eastern Standard/Daylight Time.)

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Please note that participation in Wharton’s Pre-baccalaureate Program does not guarantee admission into Penn.

For more information, please contact or call +1.516.414.5555.