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Pre-College Enrichment Programs for High School Students – Summer 2012 Options

December 29, 2011

CSSSA Class of 2011 Participants

Even though summer 2012 is months away, it is time for high school students and their parents to consider pre-college summer enrichment programs. Pre-college summer enrichment programs for high school students can be an excellent source of inspiration for students – providing motivation for the hard work required to be accepted into college – and in some cases even offer college credit. In addition to the academic benefit, students experience living away from home, in college dorms, with other motivated students. There are pre-college enrichment programs available for just about every field of study – from STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) to theatre, medicine to law, and language to performing arts.

Some of the programs listed below, in particular those subsidized by the California government, have competitive entrance requirements so now is the time to start preparing application materials. A wide variety of programs, costs, locations and application deadlines are summarized below. Many programs offer merit and need-based scholarships.

Dublin High students have participated in some of these programs and written about their experiences:

COSMOS – California State Summery School for Mathematics and Science (

  • Focus: STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)
  • Application deadline: Mar 1, 2012
  • Cost: $2810 (California resident rate)
  • Duration: 4 weeks
  • Location: Various University of California campuses: UC-Davis, UC-Irvine, UC-San Diego, UC-Santa Cruz

CSSSA – California State Summer School for the Arts (

  • Focus: The Arts (visual, written, performing)
  • Application deadline: Feb 28, 2012
  • Cost: $1550 (California resident rate)
  • Duration: 4 weeks
  • Location: California Institute of the Arts (CalArts)

UC San Diego Academic Connections (

  • Focus: “The goal of the Academic Connections program is to connect select high school students with UCSD, by providing hands-on college subject matter courses and the opportunity to experience life and learning at this top-ranked research university located in the beautiful San Diego area. “
  • Application deadline: June 8, 2012
  • Cost: $3450 (residential option)
  • Duration: 3 weeks (July 8-28, 2012) for the UC San Diego program
  • Location: UC San Diego (additional programs offered in Hawaii, Arizona and New Mexico)

Santa Clara University

NSLC – National Student Leadership Conference (

  • Focus: Leadership emphasis covering a diverse range of topics (Culinary Arts & Careers, Education & the Classroom, Engineering, Entrepreneurship & Business, Forensic Science, Intelligence & National Security, International Diplomacy, Journalism & Mass Communication, Law & Advocacy, Mastering Leadership, Medicine & Health Care, Sports & Entertainment Management, Theater, U.S. Policy & Politics)
  • Cost: $2000 – $3000 (varies by location and program)
  • Duration: 10 days
  • Location: Multiple locations including UC Berkeley

EPGY – Education Program for Gifted Youth (

  • Focus: Arts and Humanities, Business, Computer Science, Engineering, Legal Studies, Mathematics, Social Science, Physical and Biological Science and Writing
  • Application deadline Feb 29, 2012
  • Duration: 3-4 weeks
  • Cost: $5000-$6500 (varies by duration)
  • Location: Stanford University

LeadAmerica – (

  • Focus: Diverse (medicine, law, engineering / science, business, theatre, leadership, broadcast, national security)
  • Cost: $1500 – $3000 (varies by location and length of program)
  • Duration: 8-10 days
  • Location: Various including Stanford University and UC Berkeley

PAVE – (

  • Focus: STEM (engineering / technology) or medical
  • Cost: Tuition: $4170 / Room: $1720 / Fees: $265 + $115
  • Duration: 6 weeks
  • Location: Vanderbilt University


  • Focus: Diverse
  • Cost: $4000 – $5400 (varies by location and length of program)
  • Duration: 2-3 weeks
  • Locations: Yale University (ages 15-17), Wellesley College (ages 13-15), St. Mark’s School (ages 11-12)

UBC Summer Scholars Program (

  • Focus: Environmental Science and Sustainability
  • Cost: $3000 (Canadian dollars)
  • Duration: 2 weeks (July 15-28, 2012)
  • University of British Columbia, Okanagan Campus (Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada)


  • Note: this program is currently on hold due to funding issues

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