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Summer Programs for High School Students in Massachusetts

Introduction – Massachusetts Summer Programs

This page of the directory includes information about Massachusetts summer programs and camps that are available for high school students. Massachusetts has a large number of colleges and universities. It has more higher education institutions than most other states around the country. Many of these institutions along with reputable organizations offer  summer program opportunities for high school students.

Boston University summer programs for high school studentsThe summer programs in Massachusetts enable students to build on their learning from the school year, delve deeply into topics of interest, develop new knowledge and skills, connect with new peers, and interact with instructors. This page begins with general information about Massachusetts programs and this is followed postings for specific summer programs in MA, including summer programs in Boston.


Summer Programs in Massachusetts – A Variety of Locations and Options

Summer program for high school students at the University of Massachusetts, AmherstMassachusetts summer programs are available in different locations around the state, including places such as Amherst, Babson Park, Boston, Cambridge, Medford, Worcester, and many other locations. The locations provide many different options for students in regards to where they would like to participate in a structured summer program.

Some of the programs are designed to be residential experiences and attract students from both in and out of the state. Other programs are intended for commuters and take place only during the day.

Harvard summer program for high school studentsThe summer programs in Massachusetts also vary widely with regards to length, structure, subject area of emphasis, learning activities, academic rigor, cost, as well as other factors. As a result, it is important for students to research summer programs in the state to find those that are in line with their goals, interests, opportunities, and other summer plans. Students are encouraged to think about their goals for the summer and then determine which activities or programs would help them reach their goals.

For those students who are interested in participating in a structured summer program, it is recommended that they research different programs, read about these opportunities, and contact official program representatives to ask questions that may arise. The blog article on searching for and finding summer programs may be helpful for students.

Different Subject Areas in the Summer Programs

Massachusetts college summer program for high school studentsThe summer programs in Massachusetts have a variety of different subject areas for students. The programs can focus on topics such as writing, STEM fields, business, medicine, the arts, computer science, ecology and more. As a result, students are encouraged to research and examine different summer programs to determine which ones will best align with the subject area or areas that they would like to explore.

Additionally, it can be helpful for a student and/or a parent to contact an official representative of a summer program to ask questions and find out detailed information about items such as daily schedules, logistics, and learning activities.

Massachusetts Summer Pre-College Programs

College campus for a Massachusetts summer program for high school studentsThere are a number of pre-college programs in the state of Massachusetts. Many summer programs for high school students are considered to be pre-college opportunities because they provide students with a chance to begin to prepare for life on a college campus and/or the academic expectations in a higher education setting.

There are a variety of summer programs that are held on college campuses in Massachusetts.  These include Boston University, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and Northeastern. These programs gives students a chance to gain experience in a college setting.

Boston University summer programs for high school studentsAlthough life at a college can be different during the summer as opposed to the academic year, the summer still provides an opportunity to learn about the resources on a campus, interact with faculty members, and learn about learn academic opportunities. In addition, some of the pre-college programs are residential in nature and provide high school students with a chance to stay in a college dorm and dine in on-campus facilities. This can give students a preview of life on a college campus.

Other pre-college programs that are held at colleges are commuter-based and these do enable students to gain experience on a campus. Whether a pre-college program at a college is designed to be residential, commuter, or to provide options, high school students can gain experience on a campus and this may be useful in considering the types of colleges that they feel would be good matches for them.

Overall Notes on Summer Programs in MA

Summer pre-college programs for high school students at HarvardOverall, attending a Massachusetts summer program is not something that high school students should feel obligated to do. There are a variety of activities that can be useful to participate in during the summer, such as having a part-time job, developing skills for an extracurricular activity, or going a family trip. These types of  activities have a lot of merit and can be helpful in preparing for college. However, for some high school students, a structured summer program can align with goals such as exploring a topic of interest at a deeper level, interacting with new peers and instructors, spending time on a college a campus, and / or extending their educational experiences beyond the school year.

Due to the variety of programs in the state, it may be possible for students to attend a summer program while also engaging in other productive activities during the summer. If students are interested in attending a coordinated summer education opportunity, there is information on this page about specific summer programs for high school students in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Summer Program Spotlights

The Academies at Harvard

The Summer Academies at Harvard

Summer Writing Program for High School Students at the University of Massachusetts Amherst

Juniper Summer Writing Program at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Boston Leadership Institute Summer Educational Programs

Boston Summer Leadership Institute’s Summer Programs

Summer Programs in Massachusetts

Babson Summer Pre-College Program

Babson Summer Study Program – Babson Park, Massachusetts
Babson College offers a summer study program to help students learn more about the field of business and acquire entrepreneurial skills. The program is residential and it gives participants a chance to have experiences on a college campus. The program is designed to enable students to have hands-on experiences, work collaboratively with peers, and learn from faculty and staff.
Participants: High school juniors and seniors.

Bard Summer Pre-College Writing Program

Young Writers Workshop – Bard College at Simon’s Rock – Great Barrington, Massachusetts
The Young Writers Summer Program provides students with chance to enhance their creative writing skills. Participants receive individualized support from faculty members and other writers. As a part of the program, students have the opportunity to develop a portfolio based on the learning that takes place through writing-based activities and discussions.
Participants: High school students in the 9th, 10th, and 11th grade.

Boston College Summer Experience – Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts
Boston College offers a residential pre-college summer program for high school students. Students participate in academic and extracurricular activities to help them prepare for the transition to college and preview life in a college setting. Students can also engage in service learning activities and explore the city of Boston through field trips as well as events.
Participants: High school students.

Boston Leadership Summer Pre-College Programs for High School Students

Boston Leadership Institute Summer STEM Programs – Wellesley, Massachusetts
The Boston Leadership Institute has consistently been named one of the top STEM programs in the country. Offering one-week and three-week options in Science, Medicine, Engineering, and Business, top students come from all over the country and the world to learn from elite teachers and professors from the best schools around Boston. Programs include Neurosurgery Research, Electronics and Robotics, Chemistry Research, Investment Banking, and many more! Three-week programs are competitive admissions, research intensive sessions, and one-week programs are available on a first come, first serve basis. Campuses are located at Dana Hall in Wellesley, Gann Academy in Waltham, and the Longwood Medical Area in Boston, where students have access to state of the art lab facilities, classrooms, and materials. Overnight and day only options are available. Programs begin the week of June 15th and run through the first week of August. For more information, email, or call 781-431-2514. 
Participants: High school students.

Boston University

Boston University Summer High School Honors Program – Boston, Massachusetts
The High School Honors Program provides students with the opportunity to prepare for academics at the college level. The program has a residential or commuter option. The program enables participates to take college-level classes and learn about areas of interest at an in-depth level. Students have a variety of course options to choose from and they can receive assistance in selecting courses that address their interests and goals. Students also have the chance to participate in social activities at the university and in the community. There is a limited amount of financial aid for this program, which is based on need and/or merit.
Participants: High school 11th and 12 graders.

Emerson College Summer Pre-College Programs – Boston, Massachusetts
Emerson’s Pre-College Program offers one, three, and five week workshops to help students expand their learning beyond the school year. The workshops are designed to help students enhance their knowledge and skills in areas such as communication, creativity, and the arts.  Through the program, students have the opportunity to develop their research and presentation skills within the context of a subject of interest. Participants also have the chance to develop a portfolio that may be used for college admission. The Emerson Precollege Programs include options such as film making, journalism, acting, political leadership, sports communication and more.
Participants: High school students.


Epiic Solutions Summer Programs – Boston, Massachusetts
Epiic Solutions summer program, held at Boston University, offers workshops for high school students. The workshops enable students to learn professors, professionals, and current college students. Students can participate in the Social Impact Startup Programs or the STEAM Startup Program. Through the workshops, students learn about entrepreneurial and collaborative skills. Students also have the chance to share and present their ideas.
Participants: High school students.

School of Fashion Design

School of Fashion and Design Summer Program – Boston, Massachusetts
The Teen Fashion Clinic provides students with the opportunity to learn more about career pathways in the industry of fashion design. Students have the opportunity to explore all aspects of fashion design through the summer program. Participants also have the chance to develop a portfolio of fashion drawings and projects.
Participants: High school students.

The Academies at Harvard

The Academies at Harvard Summer Programs – Cambridge, Massachusetts
The Academies at Harvard offers five-day academic precollege programs for high achieving high school students. Students have the option of participating in academies that focus on coding, business, politics, and pre-med. Through the programs, students gain hands-on experience and explore career pathways in a field of interest.
Participants: High school students.

Summer Writing Program for High School Students at the University of Massachusetts Amherst

The Juniper Institute for Young Writers at UMass Amherst – Amherst, Massachusetts
The Juniper Institute for Young Writers provides students with opportunities to learn more about writing fiction and poetry during the summer. Participating students have the chance to participate in field trips to integrate their experiences within their writing pieces. Workshop instructors provide individual and small group assistance for students, as they work on developing their writing skills. Students also have the opportunity to participate in studio sessions that involves sharing work in creative ways.
Participants: High school students.


Northeastern University College of Science Coastal Ocean Science Academy – Massachusetts
The Coastal Ocean Summer Academy provides students with the chance to learn about the natural habitat around the local marines and coastal areas. There is a high school programs as well as one for middle school students. The summer program for high school students involves learning about coastal ecology and participating in research activities.The middle school program provides students with the opportunity to participate in field trips and engage in hands-on activities to learn about different facets of ocean life.
Participants: High school and middle school students.


Tufts Precollege Summer Pre-College Program – Boston, Massachusetts
The pre-college program at Tufts offers students with the opportunity to participate in college-level courses and college prep workshops. The program enables students to prepare for the transition to college and experience life in a college setting. The six-week residential program is designed to prepare students for higher education by taking college courses and residing on campus. The college intensives typically run two to three weeks and enable students to learn about areas of interest such as coding, medicine, leadership, and more. There is also research opportunities for high school juniors and seniors, which involve working on research-based activities and preparing poster presentations to share their work.
Participants: High school  students (grade level varies depending on the program).


United Nations Association of Greater Boston Summer Program – Boston, Massachusetts
The UNAGB provides a week-long summer pre-college experience with an emphasis on the model united nations program. Participating students work together to investigate world issues and develop ideas to address these issues. The week-long programs occur throughout the summer and students can attend multiple sessions. The programs have taken place in different settings such as Harvard University, Simmons University, and Belmont Day School.
Participants: High school and middle school students.

Walnut Hill Summer Music and Theatre Programs

Walnut Hill Summer Program in the Arts – Natick, Massachusetts
The Walnut Hill programs are designed to help students have a productive, summer while enhancing their skills in areas such as dance and theatre performance. The summer comprehensive dance program is taught by faculty members and culminates in a performance for friends and family. There is also a youth dance program that culminates in a showcase performance. The summer threatre program is intended to help students develop their performance skills and participate in performances to showcase their learning. Depending on the program, there are residential and commuter options available.
Participants: Students ages 10-18.

Featured College in Massachusetts with Summer Programs

The featured college section is designed to provide a brief overview of a college in Massachusetts that offers summer programs. This section includes information about a college that offers one or more summer programs for high school students.  The idea behind the featured college section is to enable students to read about a college where they may have an interest in attending a pre-college summer program.

Northeastern University

Northeastern University is a relatively large private university, that is located in Boston, Massachusetts. The university is known for the Northeastern summer programs for high school students in Bostonunique opportunities that it offers for undergraduate students. In particular, Northeastern has one of most well-developed co-op programs, which involves students engaging in coordinated full-time employment experiences that are interconnected to academics. This provides students with the chance to participate in real-world learning and to apply their knowledge as a part of their college experience. The university maintains connections with thousands of employers and this gives students many options for pursuing interesting co-op experiences.

Northeastern also emphasizes the opportunity for students to do research. Students can engage in research with faculty members in many different areas at the university. Based on Northeastern’s public information, there are hundreds of students that do research co-ops each year and there also students who participate in capstone research projects as a culminating way to complete their undergraduate education.

Northeastern University's campus with summer programs for high school studentsAnother area that Northeastern University highlights is service to the community. There are many opportunities for students to take part in service at the university. This allows students to work to make a difference in an area of interest. The university has a large variety of partnerships that enable students to quickly become involved in service. In addition, students can take courses that focus around service-learning and then apply their knowledge in real-world experiences.

Northeastern has over two hundred majors that are available. These include architecture, media and screen studies, pharmaceutical science, health science, business administration (with many options for specialization), international Northeastern University summer programs for high school studentsbusiness, cybersecurity, engineering (with many options for specialization), environmental studies, human service, and many others. In addition, Northeastern has over a hundred combined interdisciplinary majors for students, who have a strong interest in more than one subject area.

Overall, Northeastern University provides valuable opportunities for students to gain insight into subjects of interests and to engage in activities that enable them to apply their learning. The university highlights opportunities for experiential co-ops, research, global learning, and service to communities. There is more information about academics, practical experiences, and admission on the university’s website.

Summer Programs at Northeastern

Northeastern University pre-college summer programs for high school studentsNortheastern University offers summer programs for high school students. The Coastal Ocean Science Academy is included on this page of Massachusetts summer programs. The academy is designed for students with an interest in marine biology and ocean habitats. It is intended to provide students with the chance to participate in unique experiences and activities to enhance their learning about different facets of ocean and coastal environments. Northeastern also has the Accelerate Pre-College Programs, which provide high school students with the opportunity to explore topics of interest, gain experience on a college campus, and work with expert faculty members. Through the Accelerate summer programs, there are pre-college opportunities in subject areas such as entrepreneurship, engineering, physics, health sciences and professions, sustainability and more.