Application, Admission, and Visas

International Application Deadline is March 15

Click on the headings below to expand the links and find out more about applying to the W&M Pre-College Summer Program in Early American History.

Students should read all of the information provided below before completing any part of the application. 


The W&M Pre-College Summer Program in Early American History is open to high school students who will have completed at least 10th grade by the time the summer program begins.  

Students are not required to have a background in American history to apply; however, they must be able to demonstrate a high-level of English language comprehension.

English Language Requirement

The W&M Pre-College Summer Program in Early American History is conducted entirely in English and requires high-level English speaking, reading, and writing abilities.  International students will be held to the same standard of excellence and comprehension that we expect from American students.  Only students who are fluent in their English language abilities should consider applying.

If English is not your native language, you will be required to show proof of your English fluency during the application process.  More often than not, if an international student is denied admission it is because they poorly demonstrated their command of the English Language.

Non-native English speakers will need to submit TOEFL or IELTS scores taken after April 1, 2017.  NIAHD will only consider students who meet or surpass the minimum test scores:

Minimum Test Score Requirements

TOEFL Online-Based Test

 100 or higher composite score

IELTS Academic Test

7 or higher

SAT and ACT scores cannot be submitted in place of either the TOEFL or IELTS.

In addition to test scores, non-native English speakers must also submit the English Language Assessment completed by their English-language teacher.

 Immigration and Visas

International students accepted into the program will have to acquire the appropriate travel documents for getting into the United States.  This is a long process that can take several months to complete.  Failure to acquire a visa prior to the start of the program may result in dismissal without a refund.

NIAHD and the W&M Reves Center for International Studies will help students acquire the appropriate visa.  However, NIAHD will not process any I-20 requests until we have received full payment. 

International students will need to apply for a F-1 visa to attend this program.  It can take several months to obtain a visa.  Do not wait to start this process.

Find out more about how to request an I-20 and apply for a F-1 visa.

Admission Process

Admission to the W&M Pre-College Program is not guaranteed.  Space in our program is limited.  Students are encouraged to apply as early as possible.  Applications are reviewed in the order in which they are received.

Every application goes through multiple levels of review before a final decision is made.  It can take up to one month for applications to be reviewed.  Our goal is always to have decisions made as quickly as possible.

NIAHD will communicate all admissions decisions via email.  International email servers that block U.S. email address may prevent a student from being able to attend the program.  NIAHD will test email addresses by sending confirmation messages when applications are received.  If you do not receive a confirmation message, please email [[precol,NIAHD]] and request an update.

If you receive an offer of acceptance, you will be asked to respond to the email within two (2) weeks to confirm whether or not your will attend the program.  If we do not receive a response within two weeks, your spot may be given to another candidate.

Offers of acceptance contain a lot of important details pertaining to immigration, registration, and payment deadlines. Once a student accepts the offer, NIAHD will expect full payment to be made by wire transfer as soon as possible.  NIAHD will not process any immigration paperwork until we have received full payment.

Students should review all of the information about making payments and traveling to/from W&M before committing to the program.

Important: Admission to the W&M Pre-College Summer Program in Early American History does not imply or guarantee admission to the undergraduate program at William & Mary.  

How to Apply

Students apply directly to the National Institute of American History & Democracy (NIAHD).  Mail all required and supplemental application materials in one (1) envelope to:

National Institute of American History & Democracy
College of William & Mary
205 Griffin Avenue
Williamsburg, Virginia 23185
 Application Materials
Required for all applicants:
  • Application Form - International
  • Official high school transcript to include first semester/first trimester grades for the current academic year.  Transcripts should be in English on official school letterhead and submitted in a sealed envelope signed by a school official.
  • One (1) letter of recommendation and/or Teacher Evaluation Form from a Social Studies teacher submitted in a sealed envelope signed by your recommender.
  • 300-word essay reflecting on one (1) of the topics below:
  1. Identify an event from history and explain its importance in American history
  2. Identify a person from history and explain their importance in American history
  3. Reflect on a personal connection you have with an aspect of or person related to American history
Required for Non-Native English Speakers:
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores taken after April 1, 2017
  • English Language Assessment completed by your English Teacher submitted in a sealed envelope signed by your teacher