All NDignite Connection participants must be enrolled in grades 7-10. The majority of students rank in the top 5% of their class academically, are self-motivated, and exhibit exceptional leadership qualities.

Application Requirements

Students apply to the program in the 6th and 7th grades. Admission is competitive and is determined by a review of students’ academic performance and extracurricular activities, written responses to essay questions, and a letter of recommendation from a teacher.


There is no cost to students or their families to apply or participate in the program.

Student Expectations

  • Students are expected to commit themselves fully to all program activities and assignments.
  • Following each broadcast, 7th- and 8th-grade students will successfully complete and upload assignments in the Online Learning Center by the assigned deadline.
  • Likewise, following broadcasts, 9th- and 10th-grade students will commit to weekly discussions posted in their discussion group in the Notre Dame Virtual Community.
  • Students are responsible for checking all communications (email and otherwise) from the Office of Outreach and Engagement Recruitment and responding to communications as necessary.
  • Students are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that demonstrates respect for themselves and for others at all times.

Parent/Guardian Expectations

  • Parents/Guardians are expected to encourage, motivate, and assist their student in meeting his/her expectations and deadlines.
  • Parents/Guardians will be responsible for reminding their student to check email and communicate with the Office of Outreach and Engagement Recruitment staff if and when questions arise.
  • Parents/Guardians will ensure that their student participates in all program activities.