Summer and extracurricular programs provide an opportunity to learn something new, expand your knowledge in a subject of interest, experience life on a college campus and much more! While some of the programs may be costly, there are some that are more affordable or even free for students who qualify. Make sure to check them out and come back regularly as we’re always updating this list.
If the site is out of date, Google the name of the program to find a current site.
NOTE: Because of the pandemic, some summer programs have not yet updated their offerings. Those not yet updated have been noted. Check back often if you are interested in a program.
Philadelphia School District of Philadelphia Summer Programs: http://www.fastweb.com/college-search/articles/summer-programs-for-high-school-students
Teen Life: https://www.teenlife.com
Engineering Opportunities compiled by SLAEngineers: https://bit.ly/2DXm8mL needs updates
Temple Upward Bound Math & Science https://education.temple.edu/upwardbound
WorkReady Philadelphia – places students in paid jobs for six summer weeks. Applications now open.Explore your interests and build your resume through community service in Philadelphia; more information at Volunteer Opportunities in Philadelphia.
City Year has programs across the country including providing mentors for at-risk students in 19 Philadelphia public schools.
Philadelphia offers many different areas of vocational training, some are free! Find more information HERE.
Philadelphia Based Opportunities:
ACE Mentor Program is free and open to any high school student who has the curiosity and drive to learn about a career in design and construction — from contracting and engineering to architecture & interior design. Check for updates here.
Bartram’s Summer River Internship
Become an expert at rowing and learn the history & ecology of the lower Schuylkill River and its surrounding community, connect with high school students across the city working on-water, assist on Free Saturday Boating Days and teach fishing and rowing to summer camp groups visiting Bartram’s Garden on weekdays. For more information visit here.
Bloomberg Arts Internship
This 8 week PAID internship is open to rising seniors in Philadelphia public schools. Students will work at leading arts organizations and participate in intensive professional development. For more information and to apply go HERE. Deadline April 30 (apply early!).
CCP offers several ways for high school students to get college credits and experience college courses, during both the school year and summer. More information here.
Drexel Summer Institute
Drexel’s summer academic programs are open to highly motivated high school students who wish to explore what a university-level program is all about. Workshops are led by Drexel faculty and utilize Drexel’s labs, facilities, and the city of Philadelphia’s many resources. More information here.
Drexel University’s Summer Music Technology (SMT) (suspended for 2021)
SMT is an innovative educational experience for high school students that leverages music technology to motivate greater interest in science, math, and engineering. This unique one week camp is a pioneer in STEAM learning, a deep integration of STEM with the Arts & Design for the deeper understanding of both. All SMT activities involve hands-on, project-based learning, to explore: Application deadline: April 3, 2020 – recommendation and short essays required. Apply Here
Drexel University Environmental Science Leadership Academy
This summer adventure is one part adventure travel, one part leadership training, and two parts field experience. Find more information here.
Franklin Institute Volunteer Opportunities (suspended for 2021)
The Franklin Institute is looking for volunteers to fill Exhibit Facilitator positions as well as Discovery Camp Counselor-in-Training positions. The volunteer hours can count as community service hours in multiple organizations and schools. Visit here for more information. After you fill out the application from the website, email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
Janney Montgomery Scott Mentor Program
Janney Montgomery Scott hosts a mentoring program for 11th grade girls. Professional women provide an introduction to career opportunities in various fields as well as mentoring opportunities. Email Ms. Hirschfield to express your interest in attending. Spots are limited so it is first-come-first-served.
Jefferson University Future Health Professionals Program
Jefferson offers this 16-week educational and experiential program for underrepresented minority high school sophomores, juniors and seniors interested in careers in the health professions and medicine. Students attend sessions on Jefferson’s (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University) campus for two hours per week. The program begins in November and ends in March. Note that the deadline for the Health Care Professionals program during the school year is early in September! For more information, click here.
Jefferson Nursing STEP-UP
This summer program is a FREE on campus enrichment program that offers rising high school juniors and seniors an introduction to the field of nursing and its various disciplines; college application preparation including personal statement writing, resume development and comprehensive SAT workshops delivered by a name-brand company; classroom and clinical observation experiences; time management and study skills training; field trips; and faculty and student mentoring. Application deadline May 7, 2021. For information visit this web-site.
SummerScience @ Jefferson (not available 2021)
Thomas Jefferson University offers a 4-week summer program June 22 – July 20, designed to foster an appreciation of the role of science in everyday life, promote an informed understanding of scientific issues, and familiarize students with the vital and expanding field of biomedical sciences. Applications are due May 8, 2020. For more information, check out their website here
Julian Krinsky summer opportunity program .
You’ll be placed in a professional office or business conveniently located in Greater Philadelphia and working 9 to 5 (may vary by internship), Monday through Friday — as you build a network of contacts and develop your resume for the future. More information HERE.
Rising 9th-12th graders can experience interdisciplinary, immersive, “at-the-source” watershed-based learning in environmental science, environmental justice, ecological restoration, and community engagement. Weekly sessions throughout the summer (with an option to continue through the fall) will spark and build curiosity and confidence about the natural processes at work city-wide. Receive a stipend doing it! Apply HERE. Deadline May 25, 2021.
La Salle Summer STEM Enrichment Program
Rising sophomores and juniors have the opportunity to earn college credit during a special summer session comprised of high school students on La Salle’s campus. Courses, textbooks, and lunches will be provided free of charge to accepted students. Details here.
National Hispanic Institute
The National Hispanic Institute provides a variety of programs to support students in high school: a virtual Great Debate for 9th and 10th graders; a Youth Legislative session for 10th and 11th graders; and for 11th graders the Collegiate World Series. SLA students have benefited from these programs in past years; this year Ms. Hirschfield will lead a special session exclusive to our students. Please join Ms. Hirschfield for this virtual session for SLA students (of all ethnicities) to learn about what NHI has to offer. During this session students will discover how the NHI summer program can provide them with leadership training in a supportive environment. Join Ms. HIrschfield at 11 am on Saturday, April 17 with THIS ZOOM LINK.
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
PCOM FREE Summer STEM+M
The PCOM Virtual Science and Math Summer Academy (June 14-18) offers African American and Latinx students the opportunity to accelerate their STEM+M skills, learn about the college and medical school admissions process, and explore careers in medicine. Apply HERE.
The Health Profession Recruitment and Exposure Program (PCOM HPREP), is for high school students who have an interest in healthcare professions. This program provides resources and opportunities to help students succeed in high school and be college and/or career ready upon graduation. Participants also will learn about PCOM and our programs in osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy, and graduate studies. Applications go live in August, 2021.
Philadelphia Futures offers support for first generation, low income students. Sponsor-A-Scholar and College Connection prepare students for success in college and beyond. For more information and eligibility contact your advisor and/or Ms. Hirschfield.
Saint Joseph’s University
These courses are available to rising seniors this summer at St. Joe’s, along with an optional series of virtual workshops, individual learning strategy consultations and tutoring to support the classwork. The workshops will include topics such as note taking, college reading, and time management. Most classes are virtual and begin July 6. Apply HERE. Students will receive more information after they register for a class.
Smith College Women of Distinction
October 16-17, 2021 (virtual). The Women of Distinction program for high school seniors highlights the opportunities that Smith College offers for African American, Asian American, Latina and Native American students. Participants in this program will explore Smith College to determine whether it might be an appropriate college choice for them. Students will attend panels and workshops on student life and the college admission process, and connect with current Smith students and faculty. For information and to receive the application when live, visit HERE.
St. John’s College
Summer Seminars for students age 15 to 18 meet virtually for one week to discuss a Great Book by: Plato; Toni Morrison; Tocqueville on Democracy; Virginia Woolf. Each class is $150 – reduced tuition is available. This is a great opportunity and resume builder!
Temple Summer Programs
Temple University provides several opportunities for students entering grades 9 through 12 to experience the academics, energy, and culture of Temple University through their rigorous summer programs. Students can earn Temple college credits as well as access non-credit enrichment classes in leadership, language, or visual arts. For more information, check out this website. Be sure to apply early for limited financial aid.
The Fox School of Business at Temple offers programs for high school students in Fall 2021. Applications due May 31, 2021. For information visit here.
Temple’s Upward Bound and Upward Bound Science and Math
Temple UB and UBMS are college access programs that support the academic success of Philadelphia students in high school and college. Programming for 9th – 12th graders includes academic coursework and tutoring, college tours, career panels, enrichment activities in social entrepreneurship (UB) or science research (UBMS), and internships. More information here.
Temple School of Education Summer Dual Enrollment
Rising Juniors and Seniors interested in the teaching professions or an education major are invited to apply for this FREE course: “Kids in Crisis: When Schools Don’t Work”. Students earn three college credits. The application deadline is May 21, 2021. Apply HERE. Note: be prepared to upload an unofficial transcript.
Temple Summer Media
Klein College of Media and Communication offers virtual summer courses for rising juniors and seniors, and graduating seniors, interested in journalism and media. Courses include Basic Journalism Techniques, The Fundamentals of Sports Reporting, and Journalists Covering Conflict. For information on scholarships, offerings, and more, visit HERE.
COMTO Career Fair
Are you interested in a career in transportation – engineering, design, public transportation, aviation, and much more. Look for updates to the COMTO career fair at Temple University, usually held in March. Comto also offers scholarships. Application deadline April 5. For more information visit here.
Tyler Art Start and Digistart summer program
SLA students entering 11th and 12th grades are eligible to be nominated for the Tyler Art Start/ Digistart program at Temple University. The four-week program runs from July 6th to July 30th. A scholarship will be awarded. Come to the College Office for a nomination form. More information here.
This two week summer non-residential program at Penn from June 22 – July 2 is FREE plus a $400 stipend for current 9th and 10th graders. The program focuses on the fundamentals of AI, its application to robotics, and its impact on society. The program is for students from lower-income backgrounds and racial/ethnic groups underrepresented in AI, such as Black, Hispanic/Latinx, Southeast Asian, and Native American. All genders are encouraged to apply. Previous experience with coding, computer science, or artificial intelligence is not required. For more information and to apply visit here. Application deadline April 1, 2021.
Penn Summer High School Programs
The Penn Summer Scholars Program is an opportunity for academically exceptional Philadelphia public and charter high school students to perform study beyond the level offered in high school and to gain a college experience through participation in a summer academy at the University of Pennsylvania. Scholarships are available, check here. Application deadline is May 1, 2021. More information here.
Penn Summer Mentorship Program
The Provost’s Summer Mentorship Program is open to rising 10th graders interested in Engineering and rising 11th graders interested in all five Penn professional schools (Dental Medicine, Nursing, Engineering, Medicine, and Law). Applications open March 1; due May 14, 2021. More information here.
Penn Young Scholars Program
The UPenn Young Scholars Program is an opportunity for academically exceptional local high school students to take college courses and earn full college credit. Applications are accepted for Fall, Spring, and Summer Admission. More information HERE.
Penn WICS Program (canceled for 2021)
On March 27, the University of Pennsylvania Women in Computer Science student organization holds a day long program designed to educate and encourage young women interested in careers in all aspects of computer science and engineering, including digital design. For more information, to register (by March 13), and for the parent permission form, click here.
Java Foundations and Java 8 SE Coursework (check for updates)
Java certification summer program – PAID four week summer course for rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors, at Pennovation! Applications due May 10, 2019
West Chester University
University of Wisconsin Engineering Summer Program
This Virtual Engineering Summer Program (ESP) is a free, three-week program for students who will be high school juniors or seniors in the upcoming school year. The Virtual ESP course curriculum includes math, chemistry, engineering, and physics (TBD). Other structured programming such as virtual industry site visits, guest lectures, workshops, and faculty mentoring will help students gain a better understanding of the field of engineering and its applications. Virtual ESP for summer 2021 will run July 12th – July 30th. Deadline May 17. For details visit HERE.
iCamp Media Academy This program is FREE for rising juniors and seniors. Applications are open until May 1, 2021.
Youth Action provides several enrichment programs including college initiatives, toy collection and donation drives, signature service and more. Applications due May 7, 2021. More information here.
Office of Human Resources and Talent
Any Philadelphia high school students who would like to intern with the City of Philadelphia this summer should register at the link below. Use Reference Code: RCIT. REGISTER HERE https://phila.workready.org/security/phila/login
Out of Philadelphia Opportunities:
Accounting Career Awareness Day
ACAP began in 1980 when NABA recognized the need for a program that would direct African Americans and other minorities toward the accounting and finance profession. Through ACAP, students throughout the United States have received educational enrichment experiences and practical help needed for college preparation and a career in accounting. One week residential program in Pittsburg, June 13-June 18, 2021 – For more information visit HERE
Actuarial Science Summer Camp
Are you interested in math/finances? Do you know what it’s like to be an actuary? Lebanon Valley College holds a one-week summer program (on-line 2021) for rising high school seniors interested in becoming an actuary (it’s a good paying job!). Sessions June 20 to June 25 or July 11 to July 16. For more information visit their website here
Adelphi University Summer Program
Earn college credits, take trips to New York City, experience campus living, and explore college life. Learn more here.
Study international affairs in Washington, D.C. while earning college credits. Application deadline May 1, 2021. To learn more visit here.
The number of summer enrichment programs for high school students to consider is very large; Black Excel highlights selected programs. More information here
Carleton Summer Programs
Carleton College offers summer academic programs for high school sophomores. The programs include courses from the Language & Global Issues Institute, Summer Writing Program, Summer Quantitative Reasoning Institute, Summer Science Institute, Summer Computer Science Institute, and Summer Humanities Institute. For more information visit go.carleton.edu/summer or email email@example.com. First round deadline February 15; second round deadline March 22.
Carnegie Mellon Summer Programs are entirely subsidized, and open to minority, underrepresented, first-in-family potential students. Deadline is March 16, 2020
College Boot Camp
This program for rising juniors and seniors is online for 2021. The Camp offers essay help, standardized test prep, scholarship guidance, and visits Princeton, Brown, Columbia, Colgate, Amherst, Wesleyan. For more information visit HERE.
Columbia offers several College Edge programs, including sessions in New York City and Barcelona, as well as Gap Year programs. For more information visit here.
Cornell Summer Programs
Cornell University offers summer courses that include architecture, design, hospitality, debate, engineering, and international relations. Learn more about these award-winning programs here.
Experience Davidson during a three week summer program. Final deadline April 1, 2021. Learn more here.
Duke offers summer sessions for students in grades 9 – 12. For more information on courses, deadlines, and applications visit HERE.
Exploration Summer Programs
Explo provides two- and three-week summer options for students ages 9 to 17. Choose from Explo 360, Explo Focus, and Explo English, and prepare to have a truly amazing summer experience. More information here
18th Annual Forensic Science Symposium @ Cedar Crest College
The Forensic Science Student Organization (FSSO) at Cedar Crest College (a women’s college in Allentown PA) will host their 18th annual Forensic Science Symposium on March 20, 2021. Seven speakers across many disciplines in the field of Forensic Science will be there. Admission and lunch for this event are free for high schoolers and their guest(s). Find more information and register here.
The Forensic Science Mentoring Institute
FSMI offers a FREE seven week summer course in Forensic Science for high school students 16 and older. The course takes place in Willow Grove; transportation can be arranged. Applications and more information are available here; application period closes April 30, 2021
Health and Biomedical Sciences Summer Camp
Explore fundamentals of pharmacology, immunology, molecular biology, biochemistry, and medical ethics at Lebanon Valley College. For more information, visit their website here
Hispanic Student College Institute
If you identify as Hispanic, you are invited to apply for the Hispanic Student College Institute at Montclair State University. This workshop is FREE. At the institute, you will engage in career development and college planning workshops, participate in college mock interviews, and live on campus at Machuga Heights. Information will be updated HERE.
Ithaca College Summer Program
Ithaca College offers a one week and a three-week summer session. The one-week session offers courses such as ASL, Digital Photography, Digital Music Production, and Screenwriting, while the three-week program offers a more comprehensive list of courses in fields such as business and the arts. Find more information here.
Johnson and Wales University
JWU offers summer programs in Providence RI, to explore careers in Baking and Pastry Arts; Culinary Arts; Hospitality; Criminal Justice. More information here. Check out other JWU campuses as well!
Lasko College Prep Program
The Lasko College Prep Summer Program is open to eligible Jewish high school juniors planning to attend a four year college. Visit here for more information. Program offerings include:
- College guidance
- Free SAT Prep
- Financial aid and scholarship counseling
- College visits
- Mitzvah project and other social activities
Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) Summer Internship
MICA offers a design residency for rising juniors and seniors – virtual in 2010. For information and to apply visit HERE.
Summer Plus Scholarship at McDaniel College (suspended for 2021)
Students can spend a week (or more!) on the McDaniel College campus (Westminster MD) this summer actively exploring one of these hot science topics AND receive a GUARANTEED $40,000 SCHOLARSHIP to McDaniel if they are admitted and enrol at McDaniel! 2020 Summer Science Academy Courses include: Forensic Science, Marine Science, “Real World” Physical Science, Zombie Science, Cooking Science. For camp descriptions, available dates, and to apply, visit www.summerscienceacademy.com. Applications are accepted on a first-come-first-served basis.
For one awesome weekend each November, thousands of high schoolers flood MIT’s campus to take classes, taught by MIT students, on anything and everything. From music theory to Hungarian history to aircraft analysis, Splash offerings number over 400 every year and span a wide variety of areas. Want to take a class on origami? Lasers? Neuropharmacology? All are open to you. Applications open in late October. Check for updates here.
MIT Office of Engineering Outreach offers two summer programs; check for updates in November and for information visit MIT summer programs
The MIT Lincoln Laboratory LLRISE is a two week residential radar workshop for rising seniors. The program is free for accepted students, except transportation to MIT; applications are now open – visit HERE. Application deadline April 10, 2021.
mathroots@MIT is a summer program for students who love math. All expenses except transportation to MIT are covered; application deadline April 15, 2021. For more information visit HERE.
Artificial Intelligence Program
Taught by MIT and Stanford students and alumni, this virtual program is open to 9-12 graders. For more information and to register visit HERE.
NYU High School Academy Career Edge Program
NYU School of Professional Studies offers a series of one-week summer programs with various career-related courses. Visit this link for more information. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 212-998-7006 If you believe you are eligible for need-based scholarship, you are encouraged to complete the financial aid form online.
Pennsylvania Free Enterprise Week
If you are curious about what it’s like to run your own business, seize this opportunity. The Foundation for Free Enterprise Education offers a summer program that focuses on management activities, including marketing strategies and website design. Scholarships are available. For more information, visit https://www.pfew.org/students.php or email email@example.com.
Princeton Summer Journalism Program
Princeton University offers a FREE, innovative residential journalism and college prep institute for high achieving high school juniors from low-income backgrounds. Over ten days every summer, students explore current events and world affairs through workshops and lectures led by Princeton professors, professional journalists, and alumni. During their senior year, students are matched with a personal college adviser, who will work with them on their college admissions process. Applications due March 15, 2021. For more information visit here.
Susquehanna University offers several one week summer institutes: Actors; Choral; Legal Careers; i-Engineer; Entrepreneurship; Publishing and Editing; Stream Ecology; Writers; Wall Street; Wind Ensemble. Check them out HERE.
Discover Swarthmore is an all-expense paid fly-in program – that can boost your chances for admission to Swarthmore. Visit classes, stay overnight in a dorm, meet students and faculty. Applications for fall 2021 are due July 7, 2021. Visit HERE for more information – and remember that SLA faculty and documentation will not be available after school ends in June.
The It Girls online summer program gives rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors, and recent 2021 graduates, the courage and tenacity they need to solve real problems. Students participating in the It Girls Summer College – Online course will take part in a variety of workshops introducing them to topics centered around careers that leverage information, data, and technology. OPEN TO ANY SEX, GENDER, OR GENDER IDENTITY. Full and partial scholarships are available and awarded on a rolling basis, so apply now! Deadline June 15, 2021.
St. John’s College Summer Academy
St John’s College offers summer programs at 2 sites: Annapolis and Santa Fe. Program courses range from law, to philosophy, government, and more. For more information, visit here.
University of Pittsburgh Health Career Scholars Academy
These programs are for rising juniors and seniors who are interested in learning more about health care and health care careers. More information here.
NovaEdge Engineering Summer Camp for rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors, virtual for 2021.
West Chester University Summer Tech Camps
West Chester offers summer camps in coding, robotics, game development and design. Check it out HERE.
Summer Leaders Experience (SLE) at West Point US Military Academy
This selective program gives high school juniors a one-week immersive experience as a West Point Cadet. Activities include academic classes, military training, physical fitness training, and intramural athletics. Applications are open now and due March 15, 2021 Learn more here.
Wildlife Leadership Academy
The Wildlife Leadership Academy enriches Pennsylvania high school students and empowers them to become certified Conservation Ambassadors through attending 5-day residential summer field schools. Students gain extensive knowledge about wildlife and conservation, leadership experience, and communication skills. If you are interested see Ms. Hirschfield to be nominated.
University of Wisconsin-Madison Summer Program (suspended)
The University of Wisconsin offers a residential Engineering Summer Program (ESP) with intensive courses in physics, math, chemistry, design, and technical communications. Room, board, and tuition are covered by the program. Apply at https://esp.engr.wisc.edu/esp/.
Young Leaders Summit
YLS is a free four-day, overnight, college empowerment conference for low-income high school juniors, selected through a competitive application process. The Summit takes place August 8th – August 11th at The University of Chicago (transportation will be paid for students who demonstrate financial need). Participants will learn how to apply successfully to top universities, have full access to scholarship and financial aid opportunities, and set a course for academic and career success. To learn more and apply click here. Deadline May 14, 2021
The Girls Who Code Summer Immersion program (various locations) is a free 7 week course for rising juniors and senior girls who want to explore computers.
Lead Business Program (Mrs. Hirschfield highly recommends this program)
Aimed at engaging youth of diverse backgrounds, the SBI program (various locations) exposes students to business principles and the skill sets needed for successful business careers. Engineering and Computer Science Summer Institute are also available. More information here
Paid Summer Internships at various universities
This link provides summer opportunities that are paid–unless specifically indicated http://people.rit.edu/~gtfsbi/Symp/highschool.htm
U.S. Department of State Youth Exchange Programs for HS Students:
The Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Program (CBYX)
The program is for is for motivated high school students who want to immerse themselves in German culture by living with a host family and attending a local high school. No previous language experience is required.
The American Youth Leadership Program
Several different organizations implement this program, and each has organized an academic and experiential exchange focused on dialogue and debate, leadership development, and community service. Recruitment areas and application deadlines vary, Check the American Youth Leadership Program website here
Philadelphia Futures and the Ellis Trust for Girls serve high-achieving, low-income Philadelphia public high school students. There are several grant options, with various deadlines; the next cycle begins January 1. To learn more click here.