Summer Programs

Summer enrichment programs are a great way for a student to immerse themselves in a subject to see if they truly have an interest in it. Many colleges across the nation have summer programs (both residential and non-residential). Course offerings include math, science, technology, creative writing, film, visual arts, theater, music, and much more. Some programs have competitive admissions standards, others are more open. Most programs begin registration as early as January/February and spots fill up fast. Pay attention to deadlines, costs, and cancellation policies. Here are just a few of the many opportunities available. Search the internet or a college website or go to Naviance and look under Enrichment for more.


NOTE: If you received a grade of "D" or "F" in an academic a-g course, you will need to retake that course in summer school to make up that grade so that you can be eligible to apply to a California public college (CSU or UC). See your guidance counselor for more information.


ATDP - This program is administered through UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Education and offers challenging courses to highly motivated students who have completed Grades 7-11 (and are entering Grades 8-12). Classes are held in buildings across the UC Berkeley campus. There are a wide variety of subjects offered.

Behavior Health Summit - FACES for the Future seeks highly motivated recent high school graduates and college undergraduates who are interested in a career in behavioral health. The Behavioral Health Undergraduate Summit is a unique opportunity to gain experience, training and professional development in the behavioral healthcare field. This two-week summer program will provide a participation stipend and a combination of workshops, tours, and guest speakers to advance participants toward their career goals.

Blue Stamp Engineering - A hands-on summer program for aspiring engineers. Learn what it’s like to be an engineer through real experiences. They offer intensive 2-week and a 6-week programs in San Francisco and Palo Alto. Similar to a real engineer, each student documents his/her creative journey through a personal online portfolio with videos, technical descriptions of the work, milestones, and blog postings that are subsequently compiled into a single web page, which can be made available to prospective colleges or others. Build your passion project, showcase your work, and hear from industry leaders.

Camp Royal - No online link to application. Click here to contact. High school juniors attend a week-long leadership camp with other student leaders from all over Northern California to develop advanced skills with help from Rotarians, professional counselors, educators and keynote speakers. Typically at the beginning of June, right after school is out. The Camp Royal program is a concentrated, energy packed week of information, ideas and strategies that will help the camper return to his or her school as a senior to be a more effective leader. Camp Royal goals are to offer advanced leadership skills to young men and women who have had experience in leadership positions, to emphasize cooperation, excellent ethics and creativity in leadership, to broaden their knowledge of various vocations, to assist them to realize their great potentials and to actively apply their new leadership skills when they return to school.

Camp Venture - No online link to application. Click here to contact. This is a five day training and motivational camp for students who have finished their junior year and are interested in pursuing a career in business, particularly as entrepreneurs. It is held in late June at the Maritime Academy California State University in Vallejo. Students, sponsored by their local Rotary Clubs, have the opportunity to interact with experienced business people and meet with other students in Rotary District 5160 who have similar interests.

COSMOS - A residential program for those interested in the STEM fields, available through UC Davis, Irvine, San Diego and Santa Cruz. The mission of COSMOS is to motivate the most creative minds of the new generation of prospective scientists, engineers and mathematicians who will become leaders for California, the nation, and the world.

California College of the Arts - Each summer approximately 250 high school students -- makers, designers, DIYers, and original thinkers from all over the Bay Area and beyond will convene on CCA's Oakland campus and engage in an authentic art-college experience, including residing in our dorms. Students immerse themselves in a college-level curriculum studying art, architecture, design, and creative writing.

Camp Cardiac and Camp Neuro - These two programs are run by local medical students in over 30 cities nationwide, serve as an ideal introduction for any high school student interested in exploring a career in medicine.

Children's Hospital of Oakland Research Institute - The CHORI Summer Research Program is designed to provide an opportunity for students to immerse themselves in the world of basic and/or clinical research for three months during the summer. The program pairs students with one or two CHORI principal investigators who serve as mentors, guiding the students through the design and testing of their own hypotheses and methodology development. At the end of the summer, students present their research to their peers just as any professional researcher would do.

CSSSA - A residential summer program offered through the state of California. Subjects include creative writing, film/photography, and the visual and performing arts. It is held at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) in Valencia, CA.

Engineering Education Camps in CA - This link includes a list of programming, tech, game design, science, and engineering camps available to teenagers, held in various locations throughout California.

FACES - Summer Medical Academy - This is an intensive summer day experience designed to expose high school students to the fields of medicine, nursing, and allied health professions. In partnership with Samuel Merritt University, the goal of the program is to offer youth a glimpse into the array of advanced educational strategies and tools that comprise current medical training.

Otis College of Art & Design - The residential Summer of Art Program is an intensive, four-week, pre-college program for individuals 15 and older. Serious young artists seeking to strengthen and enhance their art and design skills, as well as students with limited art training, are invited to participate.

Rosetta Institute Biomedical Summer Camps - They provide advanced classes for high achieving high school students interested in pursuing a career in medicine or related fields, such as biomedical research, drug development, pharmacy or nursing. Several workshops are offered – Molecular Biology of Cancer, Molecular Neuroscience, Molecular Immunology, Molecular Biology of Development and Aging, Medical and Translational Bioinformatics and Biomedical Research – that are taught by PhD-level instructors with years of research and teaching experience. Programs are offered at UC Berkeley and UC San Diego.

Stanford Summer Session - High school students from the United States and around the globe are invited to spend eight or nine weeks living and learning in the heart of Silicon Valley. Choose from more than 145 courses offered by 30 departments within the schools of humanities and sciences, earth sciences, and engineering. Scholarship opportunities are available for low-income rising high school seniors.

UC Berkeley Summer Science Classes - The Astronomy, Earth and Planetary Science, and Integrative Biology Departments extend an invitation to experience a summer at UC Berkeley. They are offering over 10 classes all suitable for high school students, and most will require little prerequisites or background in the majors. Students could get a jump on general education requirements that are transferable to the UC system. See the Summer Sessions website for more information on enrollment.

UCLA Summer Sessions - During the summer, UCLA opens its door to high school students to study in a welcoming environment that appreciates diversity and global perspectives. UCLA Summer Sessions offers high school students two ways to engage in a college experience that will challenge and inspire them: Individual UCLA Academic Courses; or Specialized Precollege Summer Institutes.

UC Santa Barbara Pre-College Programs - UCSB Summer Sessions offers a variety of Pre-College programs that provide students with a unique opportunity to earn college credit while in high school. Simultaneously, these programs are designed to help shape students academic, professional, personal, and social development. Our programs will challenge high school students by exposing them to the academic excellence of UCSB while acclimating to the university’s social environment. We have programs designed for every type of student.

USC Summer Programs - USC Summer Programs extends a tradition of excellence to outstanding high school students through unique 4 and 2 week summer courses. Accepted students to the USC Summer Programs will balance academic and campus life as they prepare for college in the nation’s entertainment center – Los Angeles, California.


  • Search the internet to find more programs available at local universities and colleges across the nation.