15 Summer Programs in Kansas for High Schoolers

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Summertime is a wonderful opportunity to start a project, explore an interest, or get a head start on the coming school year. With summer programs, also known as pre-college summer programs, students can do all three. These programs offer a little more structure to the summer months and even provide high schoolers with the opportunity to explore a potential major or career. Topics range from STEM to theater to business management, with no shortage of options in between. No matter what your child’s passions are, there’s a summer program out there to match it.

 

How Do Summer Programs Benefit High School Students?

 

There are so many benefits to summer programs, but arguably one of the most valuable aspects is the snapshot they provide of the college experience. Many of them are organized by universities that host attendees in their dorms for the duration of the program. Living in a dorm, learning in a university classroom, and meeting new peers all provide insight into what to expect at college.

 

In addition, summer programs offer a great opportunity to explore a topic in more depth. Classes tend to be small and intimate, allowing for ample facetime with the instructor. Students will have the opportunity to ask questions, explore interests, and even investigate potential majors. Many students leave summer programs with a better idea of what their major will be, or equally important, what it won’t be.

 

These programs also offer a great opportunity to demonstrate interest beyond the classroom, a valuable bolster to future college applications. College admissions officers like to see students who show the initiative to pursue activities outside of school. In addition, some of the more selective programs can make for an impressive addition to a student’s resume.

 

Finally, summer programs offer the chance to forge lasting connections with students who share their passions. Some of these programs attract kids from all over the country, cultivating a space in which students of different backgrounds can learn from one another.

 

So, without further ado, read on to learn about fifteen summer programs offered in Kansas.

 

15 Summer Programs in Kansas

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1. Summer Youth Enrichment Program

 

With the opportunity to select from classes on art, design, science, engineering, computers, languages and more, the Summer Youth Enrichment Program is a great opportunity for students of all disciplines. Attendees will be hosted by the Johnson County Community College and will enjoy an array of hands-on classes, labs and activities throughout this program, making it a great option for students interested in exploring a broad range of topics.

  • Specialty: General Academic
  • Grades: 9th-11th
  • Cost: $179

 

2. Summer Music Camp

 

Kansas State University hosts students for an exciting five days of musical study. A typical day of camp consists of two group rehearsals, two sectionals, and recreation time at the Manhattan City Water Park or another nearby attraction. Guest conductors will include Directors of Bands from various colleges across America.

  • Specialty: Music
  • Grades: 9th-11th
  • Cost: $425

 

3. Kansas Advanced Teacher Academy

 

Is your child an aspiring teacher? KATA is an immersive program hosted by Kansas State University that lasts six days and gives students the chance to explore the teaching profession. Attendees will participate in workshops and activities designed to give them a taste of what it means to be a teacher, from lesson planning to handling classroom scenarios and more.

  • Specialty: Teaching
  • Grades: 9th-11th
  • Cost: To be announced

 

4. Institute of Reading Development Summer Reading Programs

 

Summer can be a great time to hone existing skills, and this program offers the opportunity to do just that. With an emphasis on reading, writing, and study skills, the Institute of Reading Development will prepare attendees for the coming school year, giving them a head start to the new year.

  • Specialty: Writing
  • Grades: 9th-11th
  • Cost: To be announced

 

5. Young Writers’ Workshop

 

If your student is passionate about writing, consider this one-week writing intensive, hosted by Kansas State University. Attendees will hone their command of the written word via creation of original works. Students will even have the opportunity to meet with published authors of various genres, including playwrights and graphic novelists.

  • Specialty: Writing
  • Grades: 9th
  • Cost: Free
  • Deadline: May 15th, 2019
  • Required Essay: Please provide a personal statement from the applicant about his or her interest in the program (150 words)

 

6. Summer@Kansas Wesleyan

 

This four-week program at Kansas Wesleyan University will provide students with an immersive look at college life while enhancing their academic profile. Course options range from Media Writing to Homeland Security to First Aid and more. Whether students want to explore a potential major, get a jump on their senior year, or learn a lifelong skill, this course is a great opportunity to do some light and enjoyable summer learning.

  • Specialty: General Academic
  • Grades: 11th
  • Cost: $140
  • Additional requirements: a GPA of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale

 

Check out  our pre-college summer programs guide to learn about even more programs and select one that’s right for you.

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7. Investigative Summer STEM Program

 

This intensive, two-week, STEM course offers students the opportunity to gain two hours of college credits while staying in on-campus housing at Newman University. Each attendees selects an interdisciplinary topic to study in depth, and with the help of faculty, will set up experiments, collect data, and present on their findings. Supplemental programming includes field trips and guest speakers.

  • Specialty: STEM
  • Grades: 9th-11th
  • Cost: $375
  • Deadline: May 4th, 2019
  • Required Essay: Why do you believe you would be a good fit for the Newman Investigative Summer Science Program? (200 words)

 

8. Project Discovery

 

Project Discovery is a week-long camp that culminates in the completion of an engineering project of the student’s choice. Students can choose between a residential or day camp option and will get the chance to work with Kansas University faculty and graduate students as they go about their projects.

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 9th-11th
  • Cost: To be announced

 

9. Kodaly Treble Choir Camp

 

Hosted by Wichita State University, the Kodaly Treble Choir Camp offers attendees the chance to hone their vocal talent over the course of a week. Activities will include rehearsals, musicianship, and more, depending on the student’s interests.

  • Specialty: Music
  • Grades: 9th-10th
  • Cost: $425

 

10. Summer Research Institute

 

The Summer Research Institute invites sophomores and juniors to participate in hands-on research with access to state-of-the-art technology at WSU. In addition to the skills learned throughout the week of this course, students will leave with one credit hour to apply toward their college education.

  • Specialty: General Science
  • Grades: 10th-11th
  • Cost: Free

 

11. WSU Summer Choir

 

This program offers students a month-long choir intensive, with practices scheduled twice per week, at Wichita State University. The course culminates in a final concert in Wiedemann Hall, featuring music by Kansas composer Eugene Butler.

  • Specialty: Music
  • Grades: 9th-11th
  • Cost: $50

 

12. WSU Engineering Summer Camps | Drone: Build It! Camp

 

Does the idea of building your own drone excite you? If so, this four-day, hands-on course might be for you. The camp will introduce attendees to the world of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and the intricacies of building one, including laser cutting, CNC routing, waterjet cutting, and more. At the end, students will walk away with their very own flight-ready UAV.

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 9th
  • Cost: $375

 

13. WSU Engineering Summer Camps | High School Biomedical Engineering Camp

 

This four day course takes 24 students and introduces them to the world of biomedical engineering. Taking place in an active research laboratory, the program will teach attendees about the use of mechanical and electronic parts in the human body and their role in medical treatment today.  

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 10th-11th
  • Cost: $375

 

14. WSU Engineering Summer Camps | Go Baby Go! Camp

 

Hosted by WSU, this four-day course offers students the incredible opportunity to help modify toy cars to suit children with disabilities. Attendees will work on a team, modifying four ride-on cars with a provided budget, to be given to local children with mobility challenges at the close of the program.

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 10th-11th
  • Cost: $375

 

15. WSU Engineering Summer Camps | Vex Robotics

 

Also provided by WSU, this program lasts four days and invites students to work on VEX robotic systems. Participants will learn more about designing a robot, solving problems, and managing a project, while working with a team of enthusiastic peers.

  • Specialty: Engineering
  • Grades: 9th
  • Cost: $375

 

How Can You Find The Best Summer Programs For Your Teen?

 

With so many summer programs available to pick from, there’s guaranteed to be a match out there for every student. But with so many options, we know the search can also be a little overwhelming at times. So, we’ve broken the process into bite-size steps to help you find the perfect program for your teen.

 

  • Settle on a location that you’re comfortable with your student applying to. This can be a region-, state-, or country-wide scope. Limiting factors are often finances and your teen’s level of independence. If these aren’t a concern, however, they might go as far as looking into international programs.

 

  • Determine your ideal price range. Summer programs don’t have to cost a fortune—in fact, a lot don’t—but it’s best to go into your search knowing exactly what range you’re comfortable with.

 

  • Decide what specialty appeals to your child the most. Ideally, this will align with a potential major or career. For students who find themselves undecided, choose a topic that reflects their passions.

 

After progressing through the steps above, we recommend consulting with a guidance counselor, trusted teacher, or mentor to identify exciting opportunities that fit what you’re looking for. These adults often the industry know-how to help your teen find the perfect summer program.

 

Need more help finding and applying to summer programs? Our Mentorship Program helps students identify the programs best suited to their unique interests and skills. To learn more about our services, call today or contact our team online.

 

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Short bio
Rebecca Weinstein is an undergraduate student at Stanford University, where she plans to study English with an emphasis in creative writing. When she is not studying at college, she lives in Morris County, New Jersey with her two dogs and three cats.