Prefreshman Engineering Program (PREP)

Prefreshman Engineering Program (PREP)

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The Prefreshman Engineering Program (PREP) is an academically rigorous mathematics-based summer enrichment program conducted at several college and university campuses in San Antonio, as well as, across the State of Texas and Nation.

PREP identifies middle and high school students interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and helps prepare those students for advanced studies and careers in those fields by providing a challenging academic program that emphasizes abstract reasoning and problem solving, and exposes participants to careers through speakers and field trips.

PREP Alternative Summer 2020

PREP Alternative Summer 2020

PREP is offering an abridged version of its traditional program for summer 2020. Curriculum will focus on Logic and its application to Mathematics, Introduction to Engineering, and topics in problem solving. Materials and activities as well as opportunities to engage with instructors will be available on-line. Printed materials will be available to those without computer/internet access through registration.

Register: Registration is closed.

Dates: June 15-July 30

Cost: PREP Alternative is free to all.


Contact: with any questions.



Year 1

Year 2

Year 3
Introduction to the Instructor
Class 1 Basics
Class 2 Sampling




PREP Registration

Registration Information

Submit your information to be notified about PREP 2021 or later dates.
Submit Information Now

PREP Sites

Year 1 PREP

  • UTSA (Downtown Campus)
  • Northeast Lakeview College
  • Northwest Vista College
  • San Antonio College

Year 2 PREP

  • San Antonio College

Year 3 PREP

  • St. Mary’s University

Year 4 PREP

  • UTSA (Main Campus)

Prep History

The program started in 1979 by a UTSA mathematics professor, Dr. Manuel P. Berriozábal. Today, in 2019, PREP exists at 33 sites in 25 cities and 7 states. PREP has served over 50,000 students in the State of Texas during the past 40 years.

PREP Eligibility

Eligibility Requirements

Students from all school districts within the Greater San Antonio Area that meet the requirements outlined below are encouraged to apply.

Year 1 Requirements

  • Students must apply as 6th, 7th, or 8th graders
  • Parent/guardian permission
  • Nomination Form from a Mathematics Teacher
  • Nomination Form from a Science Teacher, English Teacher, or School Counselor
  • Satisfactory conduct grades.
  • 100-200 word essay that answers the prompt “Why I want to Participate in PREP”
  • 80 or better grade in most recent grading cycle (6 or 9 week term) mathematics, science and English class

Year 2, 3 and 4 Requirements

  • Successful completion of Year 1, 2, or 3 for the next PREP Year (students may not skip a PREP year)
  • Parent/Guardian permission
  • Passing all classes in school
  • 80 or above in most recent grading cycle (6 to 9 week term) in math, science, and English
    Satisfactory conduct grades

PREP Participant Forms & Resources

Academic Record Request Form

Student and Parent Handbook

Resources for Counselors and Teachers

2020 Recruitment Presentation

PREP Application Process and Dates

Important PREP Dates

  • PREP 2020: June 15 – July 30 (7 weeks)
  • Classes meet Monday-Thursday plus one Friday (TBA) for a field trip
  • Applications Open – November 1
  • Applications Close – January (date TBA)
  • Acceptance notifications will be emailed – mid-March
  • Parent Orientation will take place in May at the site which the student is accepted


  • Absences: Student is only allowed three excused absences
  • Transportation: All applicants are responsible for their own transportation

PREP 2021 and Later Dates

Interested in applying for PREP 2021 or later?

Fill out this form to be notified when applications open.

Register for a future Prep


Two (2) nomination forms are required, one from a math teacher and a second from either an English teacher, science teacher, or counselor. Years 2, 3, and 4 do not require nominations.

Forms are located in the PREP Eligibility section on this page.

Year 1 application requires a 100-200 word essay on Why I Want to Participate in PREP. Years 2, 3, and 4 do not require an essay.

No, the most recent report card (6 to 9 week term) with numerical grades is required. Report card must include information on conduct and if courses are Honors or Pre-AP/AP, if applicable.

The following will not be accepted and will make the application incomplete:

  • no hand-written
  • no web-based (parent portal print-outs)
  • no progress reports or reports that state “Progress” on any part of the report card
  • no transcripts
  • no letter grades

No, new/updated grades cannot be resubmitted.

Yes, conduct grades are required, if not included on the report card, request a Conduct Letter from school counselor. Download a Sample Conduct Letter.

Notices will be emailed mid-March through April.

Yes, $500 tuition, paid if student meets the requirements and is accepted into the program. Notification will be emailed by mid-March with payment instructions. No tuition is charged to students from sponsoring school districts. Please verify with school counselor to confirm support.

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The University Prefreshman Engineering Program offers college credit at UTSA to students who have successfully completed a minimum of PREP Year 3, meet the grade requirement of 90 or above in Math, Science, and English during the most recent grading period (not cumulative), and are at least in their sophomore year in high school. Students will take college-level courses and participate in co-curricular and extra-curricular activities designed to complement their coursework and interest in STEM fields.

Courses tentatively offered:

  • Algebra – Scientists & Engineers
  • Biosciences I
  • Calculus I
  • Introduction to Computer Programming I
  • Algebra-based Physics
  • Pre-calculus
  • General Chemistry

2020 UPREP applications are due January 31. Contact with any questions

Lunar Caves Analog Test Sites

LCATS Program

The Lunar Caves Analog Test Sites (LCATS) program utilizes science investigations, space exploration mission operations, technology development, and habitability system architectures for Space-STEM learning performance within a program environment.

This engages a pipeline of motivated middle and high school students from the San Antonio Prefreshman Engineering Program (SA PREP) to assist aerospace professionals solve real-world space exploration technology development challenges.

Project partners include:

LCATS goals include preparing and encouraging underrepresented minorities, female and economically disadvantaged students to pursue higher education and careers in human space exploration. The LCATS project works within the framework of an actual international commercial lunar site development program, known as LEAP2 (for Lunar Ecosystem and Architectural Prototype), which is developing technologies for exploration and development of a specific lunar site known as the Marius Hills Skylight believed to be the entrance to lunar lava tube cave.

Project components include Middle and High School student workshops and field experiences extending over a four year period with annual simulated missions related to lunar exploration and habitation focusing on lunar In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU).

Summer Career Awareness Speakers

Seeking professionals with a math, science, engineering, or technology background to discuss professional career opportunities, experiences in the field, and/or conduct special technical presentations with our students.

Become a Summer Career Awareness Speaker

Impact Reports

Impact Report Download

2019 Impact Report

Contact Us

Contact Information

Phone: (210) 458-2829