Summer Programs for High School and College Students
Make your summer count for college.
By Mike Pugh
May 20, 2013
Participating in a summer program is a great way to spend your summer. Not only do you experience life on a college campus, you get to explore new fields, earn college credit and make friendships that last a lifetime.
But if you’re planning on a summer program, you need to act now! Application deadlines come early in the year.
To get started, check out this directory of 25 popular programs for high school and/or college students. But don’t stop there! There are hundreds of summer programs being offered each year at colleges all over the country. No matter where you live or what you wish to study, chances are good that there’s a program being offered near you.
Abbey Road Overseas Programs These summer immersion programs for high school students facilitate cross-cultural understanding. Students spend several weeks in either Spain, France or Italy, where they will undergo intensive language immersion and travel to historic sites. The French and Spanish homestay programs focus on linguistic and cultural immersion, while the pre-college programs in Cannes, France, and Florence, Italy, have a greater emphasis on academics (culture, history, art, literature, etc) and take place on college campuses.
Academic Connections at the University of California – San Diego In this three-week program, students immerse themselves in study of a particular academic subject. Options include: engineering, biomedical sciences, humanities/arts, marine sciences, media/ communication, mathematics/economics and social sciences/law. Participants must be in high school and have a minimum GPA of 3.3.
American Collegiate Adventures American Collegiate Adventures offer two-, three- and six-week summer programs at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Students enroll in two college-level courses and take them either for college credit or personal enrichment. American Collegiate Adventures also offers a four-week program in Spain.
Bentley College – Camp Bentley Bentley College, located in Waltham, Massachusetts, offers a one-week residential summer program for students entering the 10th, 11th and 12th grades – “Wall Street 101” and “Leadership Institute”. Within a fun and interactive setting, the programs offer students an opportunity to learn about careers in business.
California State Summer School for Mathematics and Science This four-week residential program gives high school students a chance to take university-level math and science courses at one of three University of California campuses – Santa Cruz, Davis or Irvine. Students live in campus housing with other program participants. Full and partial scholarships are available.
Carnegie Mellon University – Summer Academy for Mathematics and Science (SAMS) This six-week program gives incoming high school juniors and seniors an opportunity to take part in hands-on projects as well as classroom instruction in computer science, engineering and science. There are no tuition, housing or dining fees for this program.
Columbia College of Chicago This program is for students who have a serious interest in the fine arts, performing arts, media arts or communication arts. Participants will choose from a selection of courses and earn 1-3 college credits. The program culminates a showcase, in which students share their finished work in a day of performances and exhibits. The program is open to current high school sophomores, juniors and seniors.
Concordia Language Villages Concordia Language Villages is a world language and culture education program. Their mission is to prepare young people for responsible citizenship in the global community. With an annual enrollment reaching 9,500, Concordia Language Villages draws young people from every state and several countries. Villagers may choose from 12 world language programs: Chinese, Danish, English, Finnish, French, French Voyageur, German, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Russian, Spanish, Italian or Swedish.
Cornell University – Summer Programs for High School Students High school students take Cornell courses for credit, live on campus, explore academic and career opportunities and learn what college is all about. Some courses may be taken for academic credit.
Duke University’s Pre-College Program Part of Duke University’s Talent Identification program, Duke’s Pre-College Program offers small classes taught by Duke University faculty and a residential life program. Intensive, fast-paced courses are offered in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, mathematics and computer sciences.
Harvard Summer School Secondary School Program (SSP) Every summer approximately 1,000 high school students who have completed their junior or senior year spend eight weeks at Harvard University. (A limited number of sophomores are also accepted.) Living and learning with students from all areas of the United States and more than 90 countries around the world, SSP students take courses and earn college credit.
Indiana University – High School Journalism Institute The High School Journalism Institute is designed for high school students interested in journalism. Participants examine the role of the media, analyze their own and other student publications and develop the skills needed to produce quality publications. Faculty members from Indiana University and guest lecturers from around the country guide student courses of study.
Miami University of Ohio – Junior Scholars Program The Junior Scholars Program is a six-week summer term for academically talented high school students. The Program provides a total collegiate experience, including courses for college credit, residence hall life, planned recreation programs and co-curricular seminars. Junior Scholars also receive scholarships in recognition of their scholastic achievements.
Mathcamp Mathcamp is an intensive five-week summer program in which students receive dedicated instruction in various principles of mathematics. The program offers courses, problem-solving sessions and lectures by leading mathematicians. The program is open to high school and junior high students ages 13 to 18. A qualifying quiz is required of all applicants.
National Youth Science Camp The National Youth Science Camp is an intense month-long camp for young scientists the summer after high school graduation. In a rustic setting, students from around the country are challenged in lectures, hands-on studies and an extensive outdoor program. Two students from each state are invited by their governor to participate in this all-expenses-paid program.
New York Film Academy’s High School Workshop These immersion workshops range from four-week programs to full-year programs. They are designed to introduce students to the creative and technical demands of telling stories with moving images. Students have the opportunity to write, direct, shoot and edit short films. Award-winning instructors, abundant equipment and small classes provide students with the individual attention and support necessary to complete their own work.
Rhode Island School of Design Pre-College Program The six-week RISD summer Pre-College Program introduces high school students to the focused curriculum of a college of art and design. Students live in residence halls, attend social activities and study a particular subject in the fine or visual arts. Participants must be high school students between the age of 16-18 years old.
Summer Study Programs The Summer Study Programs at Penn State University, The University of Colorado at Boulder, Fordham University in NYC, and The Sorbonne in in Paris (France) combine academically challenging courses with the experience of campus life. High school students may choose from a variety of programs, ranging from 2 to 6 ½ weeks and may opt to take college credit courses if they desire. The programs are multi-faceted in that they combine stimulating classes with afternoon, evening, and weekend activities/trips. Students are able to obtain a true feel for college life or the city that they are visiting.
Summer Science Program (SSP) – Ojai, California The Summer Science Program in Ojai, California, exposes selected high school students to advanced topics in mathematics, astronomy and space science. SSP challenges its students to calculate the orbit of an asteroid using their own direct telescopic observations.
Telluride Association Summer Programs (TASP) TASP is a six-week educational experience for high school juniors. Students participate in seminars led by college and university members and participate in educational and social activities outside the classroom. Telluride Association seeks students from all kinds of educational backgrounds who demonstrate intellectual curiosity and motivation. Telluride Association Summer Programs are free; every student awarded a place in a TASP attends the program on a full housing, dining and tuition scholarship.
Tufts Summer High School Program Since 1982, Tufts has attracted top-caliber high school students who wish to spend their summers pursuing academic excellence and social maturity. Tufts programs are kept small so students receive individual attention from instructors. Two different programs are offered: Tufts Summit (Talloires, France) and Tufts Summer Study (Medford/Boston).
University of Chicago – The Young Scholars Program The University of Chicago offers an enrichment program in mathematics for Chicago Public School students. Students attend daily seminars given by University professors and solve mathematics problems based on these seminars. Topics include number theory, geometry and probability. Students also learn computer skills. Tuition is free for those accepted.
University of Dallas Summer Study in Europe The University of Dallas’ programs use European travel to stimulate careful reading, writing and thinking about life’s most serious questions. Courses are led by experienced University faculty and staff.
University of New Hampshire Upward Bound Summer Program During their six-week summer program, students live on the campus of the University of New Hampshire and take five classes in the following areas: math, science, English, electives and “success studies” (SAT prep, study skills, etc). Small classes are designed to inspire excitement about academics and give students a head start on college.
University of Pennsylvania Programs for High School Students Penn’s summer programs combine rigorous classroom and lab work with a wide range of social activities, trips and tours. Opportunities are available for residential students, commuting students and distance learners. Each of Penn’s summer programs for high school students offers a college-level experience that smoothes the transition from high school to college.