Student LaunchPad FAQ

Where can I find out some basic information about LaunchPad that I might share with potential mentors?

Check out the Program Overview document!

Can students work together on a LaunchPad project?

No, each student must submit an individual LaunchPad proposal. More than one student may work at a LaunchPad site (e.g., bio lab or software company), but they must submit individual proposals and do individual presentations at Senior Presentation Night.

Can a student work from home during LaunchPad?

If a student’s project has production needs that can only be met by working at the student’s home (studio, materials, etc.), then yes. Such accommodations must be included in their LaunchPad Work Plan and approved by the LaunchPad coordinators. Otherwise, no.

Can a student build a thermonuclear device?

Citing the International Atomic Energy Association, no. Private individuals are not permitted to build nuclear devices.

Can a student’s family member be a mentor?

Yes. If your LaunchPad project is aligned with what your family member does for a living, that person can be a mentor or collaborator. Their full-time work, however, must align with your project’s desired outcomes.

Can a student get paid or get credit for work done during LaunchPad?

No. While hard work and personal growth are their own forms of reward, by federal law you cannot get paid for LaunchPad work. Likewise, certification or for-credit courses are usually not “student-designed,” and do not meet the LaunchPad criteria.

Can a student work at multiple sites during their LaunchPad?

Yes. Such plans must be included in their LaunchPad Work Plan and approved by the LaunchPad coordinators.

Can a student travel or have any overnight experiences?

No. The expectation is that all students must return to their homes at the end of each day during LaunchPad.

Can a student wander off into the North Cascades seeking answers to questions about life, the universe and everything?

Yes, but not during LaunchPad.


“Okay, I hear all of this, but what about…”

The school’s first obligation is to your safety. The second is to ensure that you have a quality learning experience during this school activity. If you have a project that pushes against these guidelines, you may discuss your project with the LaunchPad coordinators as early as possible to determine if you will be granted an exception.