Steps to Become an RCTC Student

Here are the steps you should follow to complete your enrollment at Rochester Community and Technical College. Remember, there are application and enrollment deadlines, so earlier is better!

  1. Apply to Rochester Community and Technical College (RCTC)
  2. Activate your Star ID
  3. Complete Thrive in the Hive (Orientation)
  4. Course Placement
  5. Register for Classes
  6. Send Final, Official Copies of High School and College Transcripts
  7. Apply for Financial Aid
  8. Activate your Student email account
  9. Get a Student ID Card
  10. Pay tuition
  11. Buy Books
  12. Get Involved!

1. Apply to Rochester Community and Technical College (RCTC)

We encourage you to apply for admission up to one full year prior to the semester you plan to enroll at RCTC. Early applicants get first priority for testing and registration. There is NO application fee at RCTC!

NOTE: International Student Application deadlines are different than the deadlines stated above. Please refer to the International Student application page for more specific information.

Apply to RCTC for Free


2. Activate your Star ID

The StarID is a username with the goal of replacing your many login IDs with one ID, one password, everywhere. Once you activate it, you can use your StarID and password anywhere that accepts StarID. It is unique across the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, so you can use it at more than one school.

If you have problems activating or updating your StarID, please email

3. Complete Thrive in the Hive (orientation)

All new students for Spring 2023 must complete the new student Orientation course through D2L (Desire 2 Learn/Brightspace) called Thrive in the Hive.  Admitted students are automatically enrolled in the course.  Steps 1, 2, 3, and 4 must be completed prior to receiving an advising/registration appointment.

To access Thrive in the Hive, click on this link: D2L Login. If you cannot see the THRIVE IN THE HIVE banner, please contact the Welcome and One Stop Center at 507-285-7557 or email

Students who need assistance with Thrive in the Hive can attend one of the below open labs at RCTC’s campus. Make sure to bring your star ID and password, as well as a photo ID.  All open labs will be held in the Welcome and One Stop Center.


January Open Labs
1/3/2023 9am-3pm
1/4/2023 9am-2pm; 3pm-7pm
1/5/2023 9am-3pm
1/6/2023 9am-3pm

There will also be walk-in placement testing for Reading (Accuplacer) and Math (ALEKS) during the open labs. Last test(s) begin one (1) hour prior to end of lab. Please check in at the Welcome and One Stop Center prior to the Testing Center.

4. Provide Course Placement Materials

All new students need to be placed in the proper English, Reading, or Math courses. Please visit the Course Placement page for options.

5. Register for Classes

Following completion of steps #3 and #4 above, students will be directed to schedule a registration appointment with their Academic Advisor. This information will come to the student’s personal e-mail address.

6. Send Official Copies of your Educational Transcripts

Please send final, official copies of your high school transcript to RCTC. If you have attended any college, even if you withdrew, please also send the official copies directly from your school to us for your educational records at RCTC.

7. Apply for Financial Aid

Financial Aid is available to those students who qualify based on tax information from the previous year. As soon as you get your taxes done for the previous year, you should be applying for financial aid. You can apply online at or visit the RCTC Financial Aid website at

8. Activate Student Email Account

Stop by Technology Support to activate your student email account. All official college communication is sent to your RCTC student email.

9. Get a Student ID Card

Stop by the RCTC Campus Safety with a copy of your class schedule and a government-issued ID to get your student ID card.

10. Pay Tuition

Tuition Deadlines

Financial Aid Disbursements

11. Buy Books

Once you’ve registered for your classes you can take your schedule to the bookstore and buy your textbooks, lab equipment, and other supplies, you may also go online and order your books and other supplies. You should always have your books and supplies before classes begin.

12. Get Involved!

Going to class is, well, the best way to ensure your own success in college. But class is only part of the college experience. Don’t bypass all of the other activities and opportunities you have to make your college years the best they can be! Be adventurous, get involved with Student Life!