Program introduces top students to university

By Pam Bryant

Clemson's Challenge for Academically Talented Students

Top high school students from three states are getting an early introduction to the university through a new program at Clemson’s Youth Learning Institute in Pickens.

More than 2,000 academically talented students in ninth and tenth grade were recommended by high school guidance counselors in South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia. Of those, 160 were selected for the program that began this spring.

Called C-CATS (Clemson’s Challenge for Academically Talented Students), the program identifies the region’s brightest students and challenges them to consider Clemson for their university studies. Each C-CATS weekend included activities focused on test-taking, memory enhancement and coherence. Admissions officers talked with the students about what it takes to get into selective universities such as Clemson; and the students participated in recreational activities including a bouldering cave.

“Students and their parents are becoming interested in the college selection process earlier in the high school career,” said Robert Barkley, Clemson admissions director. “A program like C-CATS provides an opportunity for students to find out more about Clemson as well as the overall college selection process.”

For more information: Stephen Lance or