15 Summer Programs at Michigan State University for High Schoolers

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The words “summer school” tend to have a negative connotation, bringing to mind students having to make up for missed work or class time over the summer. However, there are numerous programs offered by colleges and universities with the exact opposite intention. These programs are designed to foster a sense of learning, provide opportunities for further exploration of interesting subjects, and paint a picture of college life. Furthermore, they’re also an effective summer activity for developing a stronger applicant profile and impressing college admissions officials.

 

Why Summer Programs Benefit High Schoolers

 

Pre-college summer programs can be extremely beneficial for high schools students, as they take students out of their comfort zone, introduce them to a new environment with new people, increase their independence, and offer a taste of what to expect when they attend college. As a result, participating in a summer program can help your teen develop their preferences as they look to crafting their college list, and smooth the transition if they plan to live away from home.

 

College programs for high schoolers also allow students to continue pursuing areas of interest and explore potential college majors and career paths. Bringing together high schoolers of similar interests from across the country and around the world, these programs also offer the chance to build networks with people who share those interests and to create lifetime-long friendships in a rigorous yet collaborative college environment. Lastly, the structure these programs provide helps high schoolers avoid the summer doldrums, keeping them engaged in academics and their brains active.

 

Whether your high schooler wants to follow a field of interest or live out their dreams of being a Spartan, Michigan State University offers a diverse range of summer programs from agriculture to pre-med and everything in between—keep reading to learn more about MSU’s summer programs that will put your student ahead of the game. Wondering if Michigan State University is a good option for your high schooler, read our blog What Does It Take to Get Into Michigan State University?

 

Summer Programs at Michigan State University

 

Note: the program costs listed are approximate, as costs may vary based on residency, commuter status, or whether scholarships are available.

 

1. ANR Institute for Multicultural Students

 

Sponsored by the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, this one-week course exposes students to the agricultural sciences and natural resources, exploring the wide variety of career opportunities available in these fields.

 

  • Specialty: Life Sciences/Biology
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: Free
  • Deadline: April 12, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students are required to answer seven essay questions to gain admittance in this program:
    • Why do they want to participate in this program?
    • What other extracurricular activities are they involved in?
    • What are their educational and career goals?
    • Have they had any experiences in ag or natural resources; if so, what were they?
    • What area of ag or natural resources is most interesting to them and why?
    • What is the role of agriculture and natural resources in the U.S. and the world?
    • What is diversity and how is it relevant to you or in your daily life?

 

 

2. Aspiring Musicians Program (AMP) Camp

 

This five-day program aimed at aspiring musicians offers a wide variety of instruction in subjects such as technique, theory songwriting, and improvisation culminating in a concert on the last day of camp. The program will culminate in a music-themed field trip, and student performances on the last day.

 

  • Specialty: Music
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $200
  • Additional requirements: Students playing an instrument are required to have a minimum of one-year experience with it.  

 

 

3. Groove in a Week Camp

 

Is your student interested in learning to play an instrument or training to be a singer? If so, this five-day camp is for high schoolers with no prior musical experience interested in learning an instrument and provides an introduction to guitar, percussion, and vocals.

 

  • Specialty: Music
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $200

 

 

4. Spartan Youth Jazz Boot Camp

 

This week-long program is for advanced music students who play the saxophone, trombone, piano, guitar, bass, or drums, and who are preparing to pursue music in college or as a career. Students in this camp will attend the Women of Jazz Symposium and Concert in addition to performing their own concert at the conclusion of the program.

 

  • Specialty: Music
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $200
  • Additional requirements: Acceptance to this program is based on an audition video featuring four scales of the student’s choosing and a song that showcases their musical ability.

 

 

5. Math, Science, Technology, and Leadership Program

 

Aimed at academically advanced students, attendees to this two-week course will learn about new developments in STEM and explore careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math. Students will also gain insight into the concepts and skills needed to be a leader in STEM fields by participating in a leadership workshop.

 

  • Specialty: STEM
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $1,950
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to submit their current grades and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to answer (in at least two paragraphs) why they want to participate in the program and why they feel they should be selected for the program.

 

 

6. High School Engineering Institute

 

This week-long residential program is intended for high school students considering a career in engineering. Over the course of this program, students will pair with faculty members, graduate students, and undergraduate students and engage in lectures, demonstrations, experiments, and tours of the engineering research facilities.

 

  • Specialty: STEM
  • Grades: 10th and 11th
  • Program Cost: $825
  • Deadline: June 4, 2019
  • Additional Requirements: A high school transcript and a GPA of 3.0 or higher in core STEM courses is required for admission into this program.  

 

7. Intensive Study in Forensic Science

 

Led by experts in the field of forensic science, high school students in this program will learn the techniques used to analyze evidence collected at crime scenes. Over the course of five days, students will sharpen their observation, creativity, and intellectual skills while learning about the career opportunities available in forensic science.  

 

  • Specialty: Life Sciences/Biology
  • Grades: 9th  
  • Program Cost: $1,500
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019

 

Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to submit their current grades and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to write an essay explaining why they’re interested in participating in this program.

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8. Intensive Study in Number Theory

 

High schoolers with an aptitude or interest in advanced math will be captivated by this five-day course teaching them to think like mathematicians—learning the basic techniques of mathematical proof, the logic behind those techniques, and the concepts needed in abstract mathematics.

 

  • Specialty: Math
  • Grades: 9th and 10th
  • Program Cost: $1,500
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to have passed Algebra 2 and Geometry, submit their current grades, and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to write an essay explaining why they’re interested in participating in this program.

 

 

9. Intensive Study in Aircraft Piloting

 

Over the course of this five-day program, students will develop a base of knowledge beneficial to a wide range of careers in the aviation industry. Providing hands-on experience, students will get an introductory flight lesson in a Diamond DA20 aircraft.

 

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $1,500
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to submit their current grades and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to write an essay explaining why they’re interested in participating in this program.

 

 

10. Intensive Study in Pre-Med Ed

 

For gifted and talented students interested in pursuing a career as a doctor, nurse, or veterinarian. In this five-day program, students will be exposed to college-level medical courses, explore undergraduate major options, and generate a strategy for becoming a successful healthcare professional.

 

  • Specialty: Medicine
  • Grades: 9th
  • Program Cost: $1,500
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to submit their current grades and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to write an essay explaining why they’re interested in participating in this program.

 

 

11. Intensive Study in Behavioral Mathematics in Artificial Intelligence

 

Students in this five-day program will learn how video game developers use mathematics in common game behavior and techniques employed by artificial intelligence developers in gameplay. Making complex topics approachable, this course will highlight the areas most applicable to making video games.

 

  • Specialty: General Science
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $1,500
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to submit their current grades and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to write an essay explaining why they’re interested in participating in this program.

 

 

12. Intensive Study in Remote Drone Piloting

 

Commercial drone usage is exploding and this five-week course gives high schoolers an introduction to these small unmanned aircraft system (sUAS), better known as drones. Students in this program will prepare to take the FAA Unmanned Aircraft General (UAG) written exam—the exam can be taken by people as young as 14, although they will need to wait until they’re 16 to be certified—certifying them as an FAA Remote Pilot and allowing them to legally fly drones for commercial operations.

 

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $1,500
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to submit their current grades and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to write an essay explaining why they’re interested in participating in this program.

 

 

13. Intensive Study in Lab Research in Microbiology

 

In this five-week course, students will learn how to collect samples, extract metabolites, and interpret data from environmental bacterial strains—learning about the variety of ways biologists use metabolomics. Exploring paths in the biotechnology field, students will examine the strategies scientists use to cure diseases and improve the technology used in the field.

 

  • Specialty: Life Sciences/Biology
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $1,500
  • Deadline: May 2, 2019
  • Additional requirements: Students must submit a score from either the SAT, ACT, OLSAT, CogAt, or an IQ test. Students will also need to submit their current grades and be recommended by a math, science, or technology teacher. Lastly, students are asked to write an essay explaining why they’re interested in participating in this program.

 

 

14. Lady Spartans: Women in Engineering High School Summer Camp

 

This summer camp is ideal for STEM-savvy female students interested in pursuing a career in an engineering field. Surrounded by her peers in this residential five-day course, your high schooler will learn about the various engineering disciplines, tour some of MSU’s renowned labs and facilities, and be introduced to women role models in STEM fields.

 

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: Free

 

 

15. Making a Game of IT

 

This program will serve as great preparation for students planning to pursue a computer science major. In this week-long residential program, high schoolers will be taught to develop software in Python by Computer Science and Engineering faculty and graduate students—designing and creating a working video game over the course’s six days.

 

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 9th, 10th, and 11th
  • Program Cost: $875
  • Deadline: June 7, 2019
  • Additional Requirements: A high school transcript and a GPA of 3.0 or higher in core STEM courses is required for admission into this program.  

 

Summer vacation is an excellent opportunity for your high schooler to further follow their interests while also preparing themselves for the competitive college admissions process.

 

For more guidance about extracurriculars, college applications, and how to choose activities that best suit your teen, download our free guide for 9th graders and our free guide for 10th graders. Our guides go in-depth about subjects ranging from academics, choosing courses, standardized tests, extracurricular activities, and much more!

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Timothy Peck
Blogger at CollegeVine
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A graduate of Northeastern University with a degree in English, Tim Peck currently lives in Concord, New Hampshire, where he balances a freelance writing career with the needs of his two Australian Shepherds to play outside.