Are you a high school student in Brooklyn looking for opportunities to enhance your skills, explore new interests, and further your academics? Brooklyn is teeming with programs designed to empower and inspire young minds throughout the year.
Whether you're passionate about the arts, science, technology, or media, Brooklyn offers a multitude of options to suit your interests. From after-school programs to weekend workshops and other initiatives, there's something for everyone.
In this article, we’re covering 10 of the best programs and opportunities Brooklyn has to offer, that provide a platform for personal and academic growth, foster creativity, and nurture your talents.
You can also check out our blog on the best research opportunities in New York here.
Note: Please keep in mind the following information is for 2023, though dates tend to be similar year on year. We’ve kept our options within Brooklyn with some exceptions for NYC if the program is really solid!
Application deadline: Applications generally open in the fall.
Eligibility: 11th graders are encouraged to apply, and motivated 10th graders will be considered as well.
Program dates: Held in the spring, with a chance to pursue a prestigious 6-week summer research internship after that.
Location: Brooklyn College
This program is for students who wish to conduct hands-on research and explore scientific concepts. It’s an opportunity for you to build essential literacy and numeracy skills by engaging in scientific inquiry, while guided by experts. Through this program, you will be exposed to various STEM fields, including biology, chemistry, physics, and computer science. You will work closely with faculty mentors and college students, conducting experiments, analyzing data, and presenting your findings. The program aims to develop critical thinking, problem-solving, and research skills while fostering a passion for STEM disciplines.
On successfully completing the spring program, motivated and committed students have the opportunity to apply for a 6-week summer research internship under the guidance of City University of New York (CUNY) research faculty.
Application deadline: March 5, 2023
Eligibility: Students who will complete 10th or 11th grade by June 2023 can apply. Students applying must be NYC residents.
Program dates: June 28, 2023 - August 11, 2023
Location: NYU Tandon School of Engineering, Brooklyn, NY
This program encourages you to dive into scientific and engineering research, by ensuring collaboration with esteemed faculty members and researchers on cutting-edge projects. If you’re passionate about research in the fields of robotics, computer science, environmental science, and biomedical engineering, you may want to consider this program. The program includes 2 weeks of college-level coursework, 5 weeks in a research lab, and mentoring by a graduate or postdoctoral student. You will participate in experiments, data analysis, and problem-solving exercises within state-of-the-art laboratories.
Application deadline: Applications typically open in early spring, around February or March.
Eligibility: High school sophomores, juniors and seniors can apply.
Program dates: Typically held from October to May.
Location: 75 Rockwell Place, Brooklyn, NY
This fellowship is for young filmmakers – the program focuses on developing and producing Concrete Stories: BRIC Youth Media Festival, an annual festival that showcases short films created by filmmakers under 21. Through this program, you will explore various aspects of media production. Guided by expert BRIC staff, and by collaborating with your peers, you will learn essential technical skills of the industry and develop your creative voice. The fellowship encourages critical thinking and self-expression; encourages you to tell your own story. The program also allows you to network with fellow aspiring media-makers.
Application deadline: April 14, 2023
Eligibility: Rising 9-12th graders are eligible to apply.
Program dates: July 10 - 28, 2023
Location: NYU Tandon School of Engineering, Brooklyn
Even if you have close to no background in cyber security or computer programming, but an interest in these fields, this program is for you. It allows you to delve into the field of computer science and its applications in protecting digital systems and information. Through a carefully curated curriculum (as per testimonials from past participants), you will explore encryption techniques, understand network security and ethical hacking, and more, gaining invaluable insight into the complexities of cyber security.
Application deadline: Applications typically open in the fall.
Eligibility: Students 15 years or older by July 1, 2019, who attend a NYC Public or Charter School within 45 min of Genspace, can apply.
Program dates: Conducted over two semesters. Spring semester (February 24, 2023 - May 26, 2023) | Summer semester (July 5, 2023 - August 18, 2023)
Location: Genspace, Brooklyn
As an intern, you will be expected to delve into the world of biotechnology and genetic engineering. Through this research internship program, you will acquire experience in conducting cutting-edge research projects in a range of diverse topics such as DNA sequencing, genetic engineering, and bioinformatics. Expert mentors will help deepen your understanding of the intricate workings of life sciences. The program provides access to state-of-the-art laboratory facilities and technologies, encouraging you to develop essential laboratory techniques and analytical skills. A few research subjects that student interns covered in the past, as a part of this program, include the behaviors of biofilm, algal growth in relation to water purification, and Zebrafish liver cells as biosensors.
Application deadline: No information is available.
Eligibility: High school juniors and seniors can apply.
Program dates: July 5 - 26, 2023. Dates may vary for different courses.
Location: St. Joseph’s University, New York (Brooklyn)
This program offers a window into college life by providing academic experience with a wide variety of subjects and courses to choose from. You can explore areas such as business, psychology, computer science, literature, and more through engaging lectures, interactive discussions, and hands-on activities. The program's faculty members are experienced educators who foster a supportive learning environment and encourage critical thinking and intellectual growth. You will interact with like-minded peers, engage in group projects, and gain valuable insights into college-level academics.
Application deadline: June 2023
Eligibility: Rising seniors attending a high school in one of the five New York boroughs
Program dates: The program runs in three sessions: Summer 2023, Fall 2023, and Spring 2024. The Summer session meets virtually with potential for select in-person meetings and/or events. Fall 2023 and Spring 2024 programs will happen 1-2 days per week after school.
Location: Brooklyn Academy of Music
This internship program at the renowned Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) invites students on a path of creative exploration, professional development, and cultural engagement. As a BIAC intern, you will gain hands-on experience working behind the scenes at one of New York City's premier cultural institutions. From assisting with production and event planning to learning about arts administration and marketing, you'll be immersed in the diverse facets of the arts world. Collaborating with industry professionals and fellow interns, you'll develop valuable skills, expand your artistic horizons, and contribute to the vibrant arts community of Brooklyn.
Please note, this information is for the academic year 2022-2023.
Application deadline: May 15, 2022
Eligibility: Rising high school juniors and seniors are eligible to apply.
Program dates: July 11, 2022 - August 5, 2022
Location: Brooklyn Institute for Social Research
This program is a unique blend of rigorous academic study and critical thinking, focusing on various social, cultural, and philosophical subjects. Through seminars, discussions, and research projects, you will dive into topics such as literature, economics, philosophy, sociology, and more. The program’s learnings include classics in the Western canon to contemporary questions, studies, and theories; the foundations of moral philosophy to queer theory; and much more. It emphasizes close interaction with expert faculty and encourages you to think critically, ask probing questions, and develop your analytical and writing skills. You will gain a deeper understanding of the world around you, develop your intellectual curiosity, and build a strong foundation for future academic pursuits.
Application deadline: No deadline.
Eligibility: Students in grades 9-12 can apply.
Program dates: Different courses are held through June 26, 2023 - September 1, 2023.
Location: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Fee: $580 - $675
Financial Assistance: Scholarships are available.
These camps are engaging and educational, offering opportunities to dive into various scientific disciplines such as genetics, DNA coding and science, bioinformatics and genome science. Whether it's unraveling the mysteries of DNA, investigating genetic disorders, or exploring the latest advancements in molecular biology, these camps provide a stimulating environment for young scientists to develop scientific skills. Workshops include laboratory experiments, interactive activities and workshops.
Application deadline: May 15, 2023
Eligibility: High school students aged 16-18 can apply.
Program dates: Four weeks in summer, with fall and spring options.
Location: Pratt Institute Brooklyn campus
Fee: Tuition $4446 + Application Fee $50 + Activities Fee $475 + Housing $1149 + Meal Plan $684
Financial Assistance: Limited scholarships are available.
This program offers students the opportunity to explore artistic passions and gain valuable skills in a college-level environment. Through two studio-based courses, you will be exposed to subjects such as intensive art, design, architecture, or creative writing, while earning elective college credits. This immersive program allows you to engage in hands-on projects, collaborate with peers, and receive guidance from experienced faculty. Here, you will refine your artistic abilities, expand your portfolio, and gain insight into the creative industries.
One other option – Lumiere Research Scholar Program
If you are passionate about research, you could also consider applying to the Lumiere Research Scholar Program, a selective online high school program for students I founded with researchers at Harvard and Oxford. Last year, we had over 2100 students apply for 500 spots in the program! You can find the application form here.
Stephen is one of the founders of Lumiere and a Harvard College graduate. He founded Lumiere as a PhD student at Harvard Business School. Lumiere is a selective research program where students work 1-1 with a research mentor to develop an independent research paper.
Image Source: Pratt Institute logo