Summer Programs for High School Students in New York and NYC
Introduction – New York and NYC Summer Program Opportunities
New York offers a large variety of summer programs and pre-college experiences for high school students, including programs in NYC and at New York University (NYU). Students who are from in or out state can have productive experiences through participating in a summer program.
The programs in New York vary by factors such as the area of focus, the structure, the housing, the educational activities, the cost, and more. These factors can provide students with a number of options to consider. As a result, it can be beneficial for high school students to research and read about summer programs that may be appealing. It can also be helpful for students to directly contact an official program representative to ask questions.
For students who would like to participate in a structured program, this page includes general information about opportunities in New York, which is followed by descriptions of specific summer programs for high school students in New York, including in NYC and at NYU.
Utilizing this Directory to Find Summer Programs
In addition to the information about NY programs that are found on this page, this directory includes a variety of other summer opportunities that may be of interest.
The following is a sample of the type of information that is found in this directory. We hope that you will find the opportunities that are included to be useful.
- Top summer programs for students with an interest in writing, including creative writing.
- 8 interesting veterinary medicine summer experiences designed to help students learn about the field.
- Summer opportunities designed to provide learning experiences for the field of engineering.
- Engaging options that integrate the STEM areas (science, tech, engineering, and math).
- More than 10 compelling options for students interested in the field of journalism.
There is also more information included in the state and topic tabs as well as in blog articles about productive summer programs for high school students.
Productive Summer Activities for High School Students in New York
There are many types of activities that can be beneficial and productive for high school students during the summer. For example, students can consider gaining experience through activities, such as job shadowing, working, volunteering, going on family trips, and more. It can be helpful for students to consider their goals for the summer, research options, and find opportunities that align with these goals.
For those students, who would like to extend their education beyond the traditional school year, a summer program may be helpful. New York summer programs can provide students with opportunities to gain more knowledge in a subject of interest, collaborate with peers, develop new skills, and learn from instructors.
It is important to note that a student may be able to participate in multiple activities during the summer. For example, a student could consider participating in a shorter summer program in New York (e.g. a week-long program) and then engage in other activities during the remainder of the summer.
Pre-College Summer Programs in New York
There are many colleges and universities throughout the state of New York. It is one of the states with the most colleges in the country. A number of these institutions offer summer pre-college programs for high school students that are designed to provide them with educational opportunities that extend beyond the traditional school year, while also enabling them to gain experience on a college campus.
Pre-college programs typically give students a chance to learn more about a topic of interest (e.g. business, art, music, engineering, science, literature, technology, writing…), begin to consider potential college majors, meet professors, and learn about opportunities at the college level. The pre-college opportunities include those summer programs in NYC and at New York University.
Pre-College Summer Experiences on Campuses in NY
Many pre-college summer programs are held at a college or university, which allows students to learn more about a campus. Although many current undergraduates may be away during the summer, it can still be helpful for high school students to gain exposure to a college campus.
While programs differ in structure, many pre-college programs provide students with opportunities such as interacting with professors, meeting current students who are participating in a summer session, utilizing college resources, eating meals in campus dining halls, and visiting buildings on the campus (e.g. the student union and classroom buildings).
There is additional information about pre-college summer programs in the following blog articles:
Pre-College Summer Residential and Commuter Options
Some pre-college programs are designed to be residential and participants can stay in a campus dormitory. Others are intended to be commuter-based, which involves the educational activities taking place during the day and then being able to return home in the evenings.
In considering a New York summer program, high school students can examine a number of factors, including a particular topic or subject area that they would like to learn more about and the type of experiences that they would like to gain.
Colleges and Organizations Sponsoring Summer Programs for High School Students in New York
There are a variety of colleges in New York that sponsor pre-college programs, such as New York University, Hofstra University, Wagner University, and many more. There are also well-known organizations that sponsor pre-college programs in New York. An example of an organization that sponsors a summer pre-college program is the New York Times.
New York Summer Programs on this Directory
This page provides more information about a number of different New York summer programs for high school students. Some of the programs are selective and the spaces in some programs fill up quickly. As a result, it can be helpful for students to begin looking for summer programs early in the academic year, to apply ahead of any program deadlines, and to choose several program options of interest.
For more information on summer programs for high school students in New York, NYC, NYU, and more, please view the postings on this page.
New York Summer Program Spotlights
The NYC Academy Summer Program
Wagner Summer Pre-College Program
Scroll down to view more New York summer programs for high school Students
New York Summer Programs for High School Students
Alfred University Summer Academic Camps – Alfred, New York
Alfred’s summer academic camps are designed to provide students with in-depth studies of high-interest topics. The subject areas for the summer camps include art, astronomy, ceramics and glass engineering, drones, computer engineering, robotics, creative writing. The classes are taught by faculty and students have a chance to meet new peers with a similar interest.
Participants: High school students.
Barnard Summer Pre-College Programs – New York, New York
Barnard offers a number of pre-college programs for high school students during the summer. The programs include the Innovation Institute, the Leadership Institute, STEM Seminar, and Dance in the City.
By participating in a pre-college program, students have the opportunity to learn from instructors, connect with peers, explore areas of interest, and get a preview of college life. The programs enable students to enhance their learning and apply knowledge to real world scenarios.
Participants: High school students.
Baruch College Leadership Summer Program – New York City, New York
Baruch College offers an exciting and productive summer program that enables high school students to explore a topic of interest, prepare for college, engage in standardized test prep, and gain experience on a college campus. This pre-college program has been designed to allow students to learn more about a potential career field, meet peers from many locations, and extend learning beyond the usual school year.
The program runs for approximately one month during the summer. Participants interact with university faculty members, engage in a learning on college campus, and get a feel for college life. Students choose a specialty of interest that becomes a focus area during the summer program. There are a number of compelling options such as medicine, engineering, finance, and humanities. Through the program, these specialty areas provide the opportunity to gain pre-college as well as pre-professional preparation and experience. Through the program, high school students can get ahead start with investigating a potential college major and career field of interest.
Beyond exploring a topic of interest, learning from professors, and collaborating with peers, students also spend time prepping for the SAT standardized assessment. The SAT preparation is built into the schedule during the program. It is designed to help participants build skills as well as confidence as they prep for the SAT.
Through the program, high school students can learn about and utilize the resources on the college campus. Additionally, students have the chance to go on structured trips to relevant sites in New York City, which enables them to meet and observe professionals working in a career field of interest.
Participants: High school students who will be entering their sophomore, junior or senior year.
Colgate University Summer Programs – Hamilton, New York
Colgate offers a variety of summer programs for students. In addition to many sports camps, students have the opportunity to participate in academic programs to expand their learning beyond the school year.
Colgate offers residential programs as well as commuter programs. The programs provide students with the opportunity to gain experience on a college campus. The programs include areas such as writing, music, and more.
Participants: K-12 Students
Columbia University Summer Programs – New York, New York
Columbia offers summer programs for academically talented and motivated high school students. There are different program options that enable students to take classes and learn about a topic at an in-depth level at the university.
The Summer Immersion Program enables students to take an intensive class on the campus and delve deeply into a topic of interest. There is a Summer Immersion option for one-week as well as a three-week option. There are many different courses available and students have a chance to develop insight into the educational expectations at the college level.
The College Edge Program provides a chance for high school juniors and seniors to take classes during the summer that are also open to Columbia’s undergraduate students. The programs have a residential and commuter option.
Participants: High school students (one of the specific programs is designed for juniors and seniors).
The Cooper Union Summer Pre-College Writing Program – New York, NY
The Cooper Union offers an intensive pre-college summer writing program for current upper grade-level high school students. The summer program enables students to learn new writing techniques, prepare for college-level writing, and receive significant feedback from an instructor.
The three-week program provides the opportunity for students to learn about valuable writing strategies, apply the learning through written exercises, engage in interesting discussions, and gain insight into the writing process from peers and a teacher. One of the features of the program is the number of students. The classes are intentionally kept small so that each participant receives individualized feedback and support.
During the program, students learn about practical techniques that can help them enhance their academic writing and prepare for college coursework. Students work on developing an idea, examining logical points and counterpoints, and expressing their thoughts in writing.
Overall, the summer program is designed to serve as a pre-college experience in writing that can help college-bound students make the academic transition from high school to a college setting.
Participants: Current high school 11th and 12th graders.
Fashion Institute of Technology Pre-College Summer Workshops– New York City, NY
FIT offers a number of pre-college summer workshops for high school students. The workshops span across four days and are designed to give students the opportunity to learn about a topic of interest. The pre-college workshops serve as a way to enrich and extend learning in the summer outside of the traditional school year.
There are a number of different workshops that are spread across three primary areas: visual art and design, fashion, and business. Within these subject areas, there are many engaging topics such as interior design, fashion journalism, jewelry design, graphic art, marketing, 3D modeling, and many more. The workshops provide a chance for high school students to engage in interactive exercises, discussions, and activities.
The workshops are run as day programs and they take place on the campus in New York City.
Participants: High school students who will be entering their freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior year. Recent high school graduates can also participate.
Fordham Summer Pre-College Program – New York, NY
The pre-college summer program at Fordham is designed to provide high school students with the opportunity to get a preview of college academics and to gain experience in a college setting. Through the program, high school students can take college classes on the campus with the professors as well as students at the university.
The pre-college program works by recommending a particular group of classes for qualified high school participants. These classes are part of the university’s standard summer offerings. There are a wide range of topics that high school students can choose when they select their classes. These include business communication, computer programming, composition, biopsychology and more.
This program has an application process and it is selective. The program is commuter-based, but it takes place on a college campus and it utilizes the academic resources at the university.
Participants: High school juniors and seniors (note: there are also typically summer opportunities at Fordham for high school students in other grades).
Hofstra University Summer Science Program – Hempstead, New York
Hofstra offers a unique summer research program that enables high school students to work with a faculty mentor on the campus. Students who are selected to participate in this program are paired with a professor at the university. The pairing is made by taking the research interests of each student into account.
During the program, students engage in working on a research project. Each student meets regularly with the faculty member who is serving as the mentor. The program culminates with the students sharing their work.
In addition to the research aspect of the program, high school students have a chance to learn about the university, the campus, and college-level opportunities.
There is an application for this program and admission is considered to be selective.
Participants: High school students.
Iona College Summer Pre-College Program – New Rochelle, New York
Iona offers a pre-college summer program that provides students with the chance to spend time on a campus, study a topic of interest, preview the academic expectations in higher education, and gain experience in a college environment. There are pre-college program options held during the summer with varying topics of focus. As a result, students can explore a subject of interest and get a feel what it is like to study the area in a college setting.
The high-interest subject areas that are offered through the pre-college program enable students to interact with a university instructor, meet peers from different locations, and gain insight into potential college majors and careers. The program offers courses in business and entrepreneurship, communicative disorders, introductory American Sign Language, foundational and theatre. There are two separate entrepreneurship-based programs that are held on the college’s campus during different weeks of the summer.
Each of the course options includes interesting and interactive learning activities. The courses also enable high school students to get a sense of what it is like to be in a college setting, navigate a college campus, and examine a topic area at an in-depth level.
There is an enrollment component that should be completed for the pre-college program and in order to take a particular pre-college course. There are a limited number of spaces in certain pre-college course options.
Participants: High school students who will be going into their junior or senior year. Students also need to meet an academic requirement.
Marist College Fashion Summer Program – Poughkeepsie, New York
Marist offers a unique summer program that focuses on fashion merchandising. There are not many other pre-college programs that emphasize this area of study, which makes this program an exciting opportunity for high school students.
The summer program for high school students spans across two weeks, and participants have a chance to learn about what it is like to earn a degree in the field of fashion merchandising. Through the program, participants can gain valuable information about the college’s own program of study as well as the career opportunities that can be pursued in the field.
A wide variety of topics are covered during the summer program. The topics include promoting, buying, retail, wholesale, marketing, collaborating, and more. Students learn significant ideas and principles pertaining to the fashion industry. They also get a feel for the types of career pathways the exist within the field. In addition, participants gain a historical and modern perspective of the fashion business with an emphasis on the developments and trends in merchandising.
The summer program has been designed as a pre-college experience. Students can stay on the campus in college-run residential housing. There are also extracurricular activities that are planned for times outside of the academics. There is an application for the program.
Participants: The program has been designed for high school students who will be going into the 11th or 12th grade. Students who will be entering the 10th grade and students who have just graduated high school can apply.
Marymount Manhattan College Experience Program – Manhattan, New York
The College Experience Program enables high school students to gain experience with college-level coursework in New York. One of the options for qualified students involves taking classes during the summer. The summer allows students to focus on the subjects that they are studying at the college.
Through this program, students have a chance to take classes in a wide range of subject areas. The classes enable participants to delve deeply into topics, concepts, and ideas of interest. Students also have the opportunity to learn from professors, gain insight into academics in a college environment, and utilize the resources at the college.
Participants: Qualified high school sophomores, juniors, and seniors (fifteen and up).
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Marymount Manhattan Summer Pre-College Programs – Manhattan, New York
The pre-college intensives at the college are designed to help high school students learn more about an area of interest. The college offers several different intensives for students during the summer.
The United Nations Summer Intensive enables students to investigate international issues, the environment, women’s empowerment, as well as other topics.
The Musical Theatre Summer Intensive provides students with opportunity to enhance their skills in dance, voice, and acting.
The Slice of New York Pre-College Summer Intensive involve students participating in seminars by faculty members in different fields of study in order to help students prepare for the transition to college and gain a solid understanding of the types of courses that are offered at the college.
Participants: High school students who will be in the 11th and 12th graders (ages 16 and up).
The School of the New York Times: New York City Summer Academy– New York City, New York
The School of the New York Times offers courses to high school studetns through the NYC Summer Academy. The topics of study include journalism, media, technology, arts, culture, sports, fashion, business, science, and more. Participating students have access to the New York Times and are encouraged to take their learning beyond the classroom.
Participants: High school students.
New York Institute of Technology Summer Healthcare Program – Long Island Campus, New York
The health and medical summer program provides the opportunity for students to learn about careers in healthcare. The program is designed for students with an interest in areas such medicine, physical therapy, nursing, and more. Participants have a chance to explore potential career fields, develop new skills, and gain experience in a higher education setting.
Through the summer program, students have the opportunity to learn about healthcare professions in a variety of ways. Students can gain insight from professors, engage in experiential labs, take part in high-level discussions, and work in cooperation with other participants. The program also enables students to learn about and reflect on potential college majors that can lead to career in the medical field.
In addition, participating students have a chance to get a feel for learning on a college campus. This can be helpful with the transition that occurs when high school comes to a conclusion.
The program takes place over two weeks in the summer. There are some scholarships available and interested high school sophomores, juniors, and seniors can apply.
Participants: Students between the ages of fifteen to twenty.
Summer Pre-College Programs at NYU – New York, New York
NYU offers a summer pre-college program that enables students take college-level courses in a wide variety of subject areas. This enables students to choose an area of study that is of interest to them and to learn about concepts at an in-depth level.
Participating students have the chance to experience a preview of college life and prepare for the academic expectations at a university. Students in the program also have a chance to become more familiar with New York City.
Participants: High school juniors and seniors
New York University Tisch School of the Arts Summer Film Program – New York, New York
NYU Tisch offers a unique program that enables rising eleventh grade high school students to learn about the process of making films. The program is designed to give students a chance to gain experience with making films, learn about telling stories in a visual manner, and experience what it is like to study film in college.
The program runs for approximately a month during the summer. During the program, students take courses that involve exploring the process of filmmaking, examining how films tell stories, analyzing films critically, and creating actual stories through film. In the program. students learn about sharing stories, conveying ideas visually, developing documentary films, utilizing animation, writing scripts, and much more. Experiential learning highlights the program and provides students with the opportunity to work collaboratively with peers to create short films. Additionally, students can utilize the extensive resources at the university to enhance their knowledge of filmmaking.
The film program is designed to be a pre-college experience. As a result, high school students have the opportunity to gain experience learning at a university and get a feel for the opportunities in a post-secondary educational environment. There is an application for the program.
Participants: High school students who will be going into the 12th grade after the summer.
Pace University Summer Scholars Institute – New York, New York
The Summer Scholars Institute is a residential program that provides students with the opportunity to take interactive courses in areas of interest. The program features five fields of study – Theatre Arts, Business, Psychology, Digital Film, and Criminal Justice.
Each field of study integrates trips to locations in New York City that relate to the curriculum that students are learning.
Participants: High school 11th and 12th graders.
Purchase College (State University of New York) High School Summer Music Theatre Program – Purchase, New York
SUNY Purchase offers an engaging music theatre summer program that enables high school students to enhance their skills in a variety of areas. The program provides guidance, coaching, and experiential practice to help students develop multiple components within music theatre.
The week-long summer program provides a chance for high school students to delve deeply into the world of musical theatre in a college setting. The program enables students to work on acting, singing, and dancing. Students receive instruction in these areas, and they have the opportunity to quickly apply their learning through a variety of experiential exercises.
During the program, students also collaborate with each other, engage in thoughtful discussions, and gain insight into techniques that can be used to share a story through the performing arts. One of the features of the program involves preparing for auditions. Students critically examine the audition process, learn techniques to prepare for auditions, and implement strategies that can be utilized in an audition setting.
The summer pre-college program enables students to get a preview of the types of musical theatre opportunities that are available at the college level. Participants also have the chance to gain experience being on a campus and learning in a college environment.
There is registration process for the program.
Participants: High school freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Summer Architecture Program – Troy, New York
Rensselaer offers an exciting summer program that focuses on the field of architecture. It is designed to help high school students gain experience with a topic of interest, become more familiar with the study of architecture at the college level, and explore potential career options in the field.
The two-week program provides instruction on significant concepts, principles, and topics in the architectural field. Students learn techniques involving drawing by hand, modeling, and using computer software. The instruction is balanced with ample opportunities for experiential learning in a studio. In the studio setting, students receive feedback and information to help them progress through interesting and practical activities. Through the studio component, participants can get a feel for what it is a like to be a professional architect. Additionally, students can utilize the resources at the college as they explore the field and become more familiar with majoring in architecture.
The pre-college architecture program has a residential and commuter option. With both options, students have the opportunity to spend time on the campus, interact with an experienced instructor, learn in a college environment, and explore a topic of interest. The residential model enables students to stay on the campus and experience college life. The commuter model is less expensive and enables students to come to the campus each day for the educational activities. There is an application for the program.
Participants: High school students who will be entering the sophomore, junior, or senior year.
Sarah Lawrence College Summer Film Program – Bronxville, New York
The film program that is offered in the summer is a collaborative effort by SLC and the International Film Institute of New York. The program provides high school students with a unique opportunity to explore the process of filmmaking. Through the program, students learn about a variety of aspects that are part of planning, developing, and creating films. They get to examine the process from different angles and learn about different roles involved with making a film.
The five-week summer program is designed to give students important foundational knowledge and begin to develop the skills that are used in filmmaking. Participants have the opportunity to study topics such as script writing, directing, production, and more. There is also an emphasis on sharing narratives in a visual manner.
The summer program provides high school students with a chance to get a feel for what it is like to be a fimmaker. As the program progresses, participants explore the phases involved with making films. By the end of the program, students can expect to create an original short film. The experiences that the program provides can be helpful for high school students who are thinking about the studying film at the college level.
The film program has a residential model and a commuter option. Residential students can stay on the campus and live in college dorms. Commuter students can participate in the program’s activities, leave the campus in the evenings, and return to the college in mornings. Both options give students the chance to spend time on a college campus and learn about opportunities in a post-secondary educational setting. There is a registration process for the program and a limited amount of financial assistance may be available. Students are encouraged to inquire about financial assistance with a program representative.
Participants: High school students who will be entering their sophomore, junior, or senior year.
St. Lawrence University High School Summer Program – Canton, New York
This Summer Program enables high school students to gain experience in a college setting and learn about a subject of interest through college-level coursework. The summer opportunity is designed to help high school students become familiar with college life and academics. This preview of college can be helpful for students as they consider the transition that occurs when they have completed high school.
Through the program, students can choose from wide variety of interesting courses, utilize the resources on the campus, get to know other students, and become more comfortable in a college environment. Participating students also have the opportunity to learn professors and instructors with expertise in a given field of study.
The summer program is residential, which enables high school students to stay in dormitories and have meals in a popular dining facility on the campus. As a result, this experience enables students to get a feel for college life.
Participants: The residential model in the program is designed for students ages fifteen and older. The commuter option is designed for students age fourteen and older.
Stony Brook University Summer Research Program – Stony Brook, New York
Stony Brook offers a unique summer research program that is designed for high school students (11th graders). The program, known as the Simons Research Program, enables students to learn about and participate in research in an area of interest.
In this program, students connect with a professor at the university, who serves as a mentor. Participants work the professor as well as current undergrads and graduate students. The program provides the opportunity for students to engage in a research-based project and to share their work with other participants and members of the community at the university. In past year, students have been able to do projects in areas such as pharmacology, computer science, math, medicine, engineering, and more.
During the program, students can live in university-run housing on campus or they can commute. Through the program, participants have a chance to learn about life in a university setting and get a feel for the college experience. The program has an application process for admission.
Participants: High school students who are in the 11th grade when they apply.
Syracuse Summer College – Syracuse, New York
The Summer College enables students to learn more about a topic or subject of interest. The summer college programs vary in length from one to six weeks. Students can explore subjects such as art, acting, business, computer studies, engineering, film, law, photography, science, and more. As a result, students can learn about topics at an in-depth level.
There is also a residential component that is available through the summer college, which enables students to get feel for life on a university’s campus.
Participants: High school students.
Wagner University Summer Pre-College Program – Staten Island, New York
Wagner offers a summer pre-collegiate experience for high school students. The program provides students with the opportunity to take short intensive courses on the campus in an area of interest.
Students can choose from a variety of high-interest interdisciplinary tracks. Program options have included medicine and science, psychology and photography, business and communications, and more. In addition to learning about topics of interest, the program provides students with a chance to prepare for college, attend workshops, and go on field trips in New York.
Participants: High school students that will be going in 10th, 11th, and 12th grade.
Recommended Resources that may be Useful for Finding Summer Experiences
There is more information about and descriptions of summer programs throughout this directory. The following are some of the recommended resources.
- Summer options on college campuses in the state of Massachusetts.
- 10-plus useful opportunities for students to learn about computer science.
- Pre-college programs at universities in the state of Connecticut.
- Ideas that can be considered in order to help determine whether a summer program is a good match for a student.
- Productive alternatives and ideas for students who have an interest in the performing arts.