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15 Summer STEM Programs for High School Students

A summer program might be valuable to your application if you’re a determined high school student looking to pursue a STEM career. In this post, we have curated a list of 15 Summer STEM Programs. Each of these programs can showcase your passion and dedication towards exploring your interested field outside classroom walls.


Moreover, some of the more prestigious programs on this list are great additions to any application due to their selectivity being an indicator of your caliber as a student!


One common factor about each program on this list is that they have minimal to no tuition fees or offer significant financial aid, making them accessible to everyone.


A research-based summer program for high school juniors around the world for engineering and other STEM subjects, RSI invites 80 of the brightest students from different countries to participate in a 6-week, fully-funded research program, where you conduct independent research in engineering and other STEM subjects and engage in college-level course work.


Participants experience the entire research cycle - from reading the most current literature in their chosen field to drafting and executing a detailed research plan. The culmination of the event is presenting your final findings through conference style-oral and written reports. You can find previous reports from students here!

RSI is a highly prestigious program, owing to the host university and the selectivity of the program. Students who are admitted into RSI go on to gain admission to top Ivies. Therefore, if you are considering a STEM summer program, the RSI should be at the top of your list!

Note: Here’s a guide we wrote about the program, and all you need to know about getting into RSI.

Cost: No cost; stipend provided

Location: MIT Campus, Cambridge MA

Application Deadline (Summer 2023):

  • January 15th, 2023 (U.S. Citizens)

  • March 15th, 2023 (International Students)

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 25th to August 5th, 2023

Selection Rate: Highly Selective

Eligibility: All high school juniors in good academic standing are welcome to apply.


True to its name, the Stanford Institute of Medicine Summer Research Program provides extensive research opportunities across various medical disciplines for all its participants, ranging from neurobiology to cancer biology. The program aims to create interest in medical sciences, shed light on research processes and increase diversity in the field of medical science.


If selected, you will be assigned a particular field of study and spend 2 months being mentored by eminent scholars, researchers, and Ph.D. fellows in the field of medicine. The assignment of your field of study is based on your preference, and each branch has a different internship structure in order to give you the best exposure.

This program will keep you challenged and give you an immersive learning experience into the nuances of research work such as ethics, methodology, collection and analysis of scientific data, etc. Moreover, an added bonus is a stipend of $500 upon successful completion of the program!

Note: Here’s a guide we wrote about SIMR - you can check it out here.


Cost: No cost; stipend provided (Note. The application fee of $40 can be waived)

Location: Stanford Campus

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): 25th February 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 12th to August 3rd, 2023

Selection Rate: Highly Selective

Eligibility:

  • Must be juniors or seniors at the time of application.

  • Must be 16 years or older by the start of the program.

  • Students must be living in the U.S. and hold either citizenship or permanent resident status.

Note: Stanford has stated that the application process will strongly favor Bay Area students; however, all students are welcome to apply.


If you're interested in exploring advanced math topics and developing problem-solving skills, MathCamp is your summer camp! MathCamp is a program designed by the Mathematics Foundation of America, a non-profit organization hosting annual MathCamps.


A four-week program held in Champlain College, Burlington, VT, MathCamp lets you attend lectures and workshops on various topics and work on math projects individually as well as in collaboration with fellow camp-goers. Some topics explored in previous MathCamps include combinatorics, graph theory, and number theory!

MathCamp is an opportunity for you to explore undergraduate and graduate-level topics while simultaneously building valuable problem-solving skills in any field of study you choose. We've written a blog on 7 compelling reasons to apply to MathCamp, you can read it here!

Cost: $5,000 (Financial Aid is available on a case-by-case basis)

Location (Summer 2023): Champlain College

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): March 9th, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): July 2nd to August 6th, 2023

Eligibility: Any student between the ages of 13-18 is eligible.


A pre-college program offered by one of the topmost institutes in the world, the MIT pre-college program lets high schoolers take up 5 rigorous, college-level courses across 6 weeks and develop their academic, research, critical thinking, and personal skills.


The program exposes students to sessions, discussions, and a 1:1 guidance program with top mentors in STEM. You will learn the importance of STEM as a solution to real-world challenges and work with your STEM knowledge to build a better world.


At the end of the program, you receive a comprehensive report highlighting your strengths, areas of improvement, skills, and opportunities. This guide can help you draft a stellar college application and be a better college student.

Note: Over 30% of MITES alums have been admitted to MIT!


Cost: No Cost

Location: MIT Campus, Cambridge MA

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): February 1st, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): Late June through early August

Selection Rate: Highly Selective

Eligibility:

  • All high school students in their junior year.

  • Students must hold U.S. Citizenship or have Permanent Resident status.

Note. MITES strongly encourages first-generation students, ethnically and racially underrepresented groups, and high-achieving students from low economic backgrounds to apply.

The ASPIRE program by Johns Hopkins aims to provide a supportive and holistic atmosphere for STEM aspirants, with workshops, problem-solving in groups, mentorship sessions with top faculty, and hands-on projects.


Typical areas of research include Aerospace Engineering & Planetary Science, Applied Physics, Biology & Chemistry, Computer Science, Engineering, Information Technology & Cybersecurity, and Mathematics & Data Analysis. Each student has to choose one area of interest and can either choose to participate in person, hybrid, or complete their program virtually.


The program is entirely beginner-friendly and has an acceptance rate between 15%-20%.


Note: If you are not eligible for the ASPIRE Program, Johns Hopkins offers other summer programs for high school students!

Cost: Free of cost

Location: Johns Hopkins University Campus, Baltimore, MD

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): February 15, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 27th to August 18th, 2023

Selectivity: Selective

Eligibility:

  • High-school juniors and seniors residing in the Washington-Baltimore Metro area.

  • A minimum GPA of 2.8 is required.

  • Must be 15 years by June 15th, 2023 (For Summer 2023 session)

  • Only U.S. Citizens are eligible to apply.


Lumiere was founded by researchers at Harvard and Oxford. Hundreds of ambitious high school students do research in the field of engineering through the Lumiere Research Scholar Programs. Each student is paired with a top Ph.D. and works with their mentor 1-1 to produce a university-level research paper.


The programs are entirely virtual and vary in duration based on the student’s end goal with respect to how much of a deep dive they would prefer. There are various STEM subjects, such as mathematics, chemistry or more.

Also, check out the Lumiere Research Inclusion Foundation, a non-profit research program for talented, low-income students.

Cost: Free (if on full financial aid), the individual research program is $2600

Location: Virtual

Application Deadline: Applications are open throughout the year for the four cohorts - they are due in February, May, September, and December. Currently, applications for the Summer Cohort close on March 12, 2023. Apply here!

Program Dates: Four cohorts run throughout the year, namely the spring, summer, winter, and fall cohorts.

Selection Rate: Selective

Eligibility: High school students can apply


If you've been looking for cutting-edge, highly competitive summer programs, the Anson L. Clark's Scholars Program in Texas is one you must have heard of. Once selected for this 6-week program, you will join a small cohort of 12 high-achieving students to conduct research in the field of engineering and receive mentorship and guidance from some of the top scholars in the country.

This program recreates an intensive college application experience, taking into account the applicant’s test scores, grades, and activity list. To give you an idea of just how competitive the pool is, selected students usually have SAT scores in the 99th percentile!


Along with the 1:1 research opportunities, you also attend discussions, seminars, and field visits as part of your curriculum.


Note: The acceptance rate for the program is less than 3%. We’ve covered such information and a few compelling reasons to apply for this program here.


Cost: No Cost; stipend provided

Location: Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): February 13, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 18th - August 3rd, 2023

Selection Rate: Highly Selective

Eligibility:

  • Must be 17 years by the start of the program.

  • They should graduate by 2023 or 2024 (For Summer 2023).


Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Human Oncology and Pathogenesis Program (HOPP) offers a Summer Student Program for students to conduct independent research projects while participating in extracurricular activities, training, and other possibilities.

Students are guided by a postdoctoral fellow, graduate student, or research technician during the 8-week program. Once the program concludes, students present their projects at a poster symposium. Applications for the 2023 program are open till January 6, 2023.


Cost: No Cost (Note. You will have to cover transportation and accommodation costs)

Location: Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): February 10th, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 28th to August 23rd, 2023.

Eligibility:

  • Students must complete 9th grade by June 2023 (For Summer 2023)

  • Must be 14 or older by June 28, 2023 (For Summer 2023)

  • A minimum of a 3.5 G.P.A in STEM subjects

Roswell Park allows high school juniors to gain first-hand scientific research to prepare them for future careers in healthcare. The research program involves hands-on lab experience, an opportunity to use the latest technology, and mentorship and collaboration.


In this program, you will be able to work on your own research project in your area of interest alongside a mentor. Areas of interest include:

  • Biostatistics

  • Cancer biophysics

  • Cancer cellular/molecular biology

  • Cancer genetics

  • Cancer Prevention/epidemiology

  • Health behavior/cancer health disparities

  • Molecular Pharmacology and cancer therapeutics

  • Tobacco regulatory science

  • Tumor immunology

This experience is an excellent opportunity to work in a professional lab environment and network with top researchers in STEM fields. An added bonus is the planned field trips organized by Roswell! Previous trip locations include Darian Lake, a tour of Niagara Falls, and a Buffalo Bison minor league game.


Cost: $65

Location: Roswell Park, Buffalo, NY

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): February 25th, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 26th to August 11th, 2023

Eligibility:

  • Must be in their junior year while applying.

  • Must be a local resident of Western New York (Erie, Niagara, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua)

  • Must hold U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status.

  • Must be 15 or older by June 26th, 2023 (For Summer 2023).


​​Offered by Carnegie Mellon University, the Summer Academy for Math and Sciences (SAMS) allows students to develop a deeper understanding of STEM through traditional classroom instruction, hands-on projects, and sustained engagement with renowned professors.


SAMS consists of 2 parts - the first part is a virtual jumpstart for students consisting of essential skill-building sessions required for the latter part of the program. The 2nd part is a 5-week, in-person pre-college program. The program culminates with a final symposium consisting of students' STEM project presentations and a closing awards ceremony.


Note: Every student in SAMS also gains an opportunity to interact with admission, financial aid, student affairs, academic support staff, and current STEM majors at Carnegie Mellon!


Cost: No cost

Location: Carnegie Mellon Campus, Pittsburg, PA

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): March 15th, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): July 1st to August 5th, 2023

Selection Rate: Selective

Eligibility:

  • Be 16 years or older by the start of the program.

  • Be a U.S. Citizen or hold Permanent Resident status.

  • Be a junior in high school by the submission of the application.


Conducted by the National Institute of Health, the HiSTEP program offers internships in the areas of biomedical engineering and healthcare. The program aims to expand the pipeline of students interested in biomedical and healthcare careers by expanding opportunities for high school students.

Spanning over 5 weeks in Bethesda, MD, you'll delve into the scope of the scientific enterprise and the importance of biomedical research and other STEM-M careers. Sessions in the HiSTEP program have previously included the following -

  • Basic science skills used in laboratory settings through hands-on science experiments.

  • Current topics in Health Science through case studies and group projects.

  • Exploring STEM-M careers through learning the roles played by scientists, healthcare workers, and public health experts.

  • Career readiness and leadership development through improving skills such as self-awareness, assertiveness, and interpersonal/ resiliency skills.

  • College and career advising through resources that improve understanding of the college application process, aid in scholarship and mentor finding, and help with the transition to college.

Cost: No Cost + stipend ($2150) and Public transport benefits provided

Location: National Institute of Health Campus (Bethesda, MD)

Application Deadline (Summer 2024): 1st February 2024

Program Dates (2023): July 5th - August 3rd.

Selection Rates: Selective

Eligibility:

  • Must be a high school sophomore or junior/ rising sophomore (turn 17 by June 15th, 2023, for Summer 2023 program)

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or hold permanent resident status.

  • Maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher.

  • Attend a school where 30% or more of the student body participated in the Federal Free/ Reduced Lunch Program.

  • Have their primary residence in Virginia, Maryland, or Washington, DC (within 40 miles of the main NIH campus in Bethesda, MD).


Rockefeller University is the oldest biomedical research institute in the United States, and its SSRP program allows students to design and conduct their own research projects as a part of a themed research track.


Once selected, you can expect to spend at least 35 hours/week at the RockEDU Laboratory, working on hands-on research in the field of biomedicine. The program has two components - core sessions and research tracks. Core sessions are scheduled throughout the week and are designed to showcase the vast diversity of experimental approaches.


On the other hand, as a part of the research track - groups of 8-12 SSRP scholars are assigned to a research track and mentored in a specific scientific discipline. Past research topics included Silkwork Biomaterials, Nanonbody Binding patterns, and RNA Virus Discover and Bioinformatics, just to name a few (you can find a whole list of topics here).


Cost: No Cost

Location: Rockefeller University Campus, NY

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): January 6th, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 26th - August 10th, 2023

Selection Rates: Highly Selective

Eligibility:

  • Current junior or senior in high school.

  • Must be at least 16 years old at the start of the program.

The Simons Summer Research Program allows high school students to undertake hands-on research in a variety of disciplines. In the program, you are matched with a Stony Brook faculty mentor, join a research group or team, and will assume responsibility for a project.


Apart from learning valuable techniques and experiencing life at a major research university, Simons Fellows also gain the opportunity to attend weekly faculty research talks and participate in special workshops, tours, and events.

As part of the program, you are expected to conduct your own research using cutting-edge equipment provided by the university. To complete this apprenticeship, you are required to produce a written research abstract and a research poster.

Note: We’ve written about the Simons Summer Research Program in more detail here.

Cost: No cost (Note. While there is no tuition cost, you will have to cover the expenses for your housing and dining. The estimated cost for Summer 2023 is $3046.75.)

Location: Stony Brook University, NY

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): February 10th, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 26th - August 11th, 2023

Selection Rates: Highly Selective

Eligibility:

  • Must be in their junior year at the time of applying.

  • Must be U.S. citizens or hold Permanent Resident status.

  • Must be 16 years of age by the start of the program.


ARISE at NYU is a free seven-week summer program for 10th and 11th graders residing in New York City. During their seven weeks, students will work under the guidance of NYU’s top research faculty, gaining authentic research opportunities in various STEM disciplines, such as mechanical engineering, robotics, or bio-molecular engineering.


The program is segregated into two sections. The first two weeks involve numerous workshops on topics such as scientific ethics, contemporary issues in scientific inquiry, data collection and analysis, research practices, lab safety, and more. The latter 5 weeks are spent in the lab alongside your mentor, where you make significant contributions to the lab’s research objectives.


ARISE participants will train in college-level research, professional development, and colloquium and make substantial contributions to their laboratories. You can view the subject areas for 2023 over here!

Cost: No cost

Location: New York University Campus, NY (Specific Area depends on subject area/ lab choice)

Application Deadline (Summer 2023): March 5th, 2023

Program Dates (Summer 2023): June 28th - August 11th, 2023

Eligibility:

  • Rising juniors and rising seniors.

  • Must be based in New York City.

The Summer Immersion Program (SIP) is run by the Girls Who Code, an organization with a mission to help girls around the world to close the gender gap in the computer sciences and tech jobs. As part of their mission, SIP is an opportunity for young girls to learn about this field while also making meaningful connections in the industry.


In SIP, you will attend live virtual classes sponsored by leading companies such as MetLife, Bank of America, and Game Design. In 2023, you will learn about intermediate CS concepts, the iterative design process, and UX design basics and gain an introduction to Game Design!


If you are interested in SIP, you can take a look at our more detailed post that talks about the benefits of this program!


Note: We’ve covered this program in detail with our review of the SIP here.


Cost: No Cost

Location: Virtual

Application Deadline (Summer 2023):

  • Early Acceptance - February 17th

  • General Acceptance - March 29th

Program Dates (Summer 2023):

  • Round 1 - June 16th - June 30th, 2023 (U.S. Students Only)

  • Round 2 - July 19th - July 21st, 2023 (U.S. and International Students)

  • Round 3 - July 31st - August 11th, 2023 (U.S. and International Students)

Eligibility:

  • Identify as a girl or non-binary.

  • In the 2022-2023 school year, you were a freshman, sophomore, or junior (U.S. Citizen)

  • Should be between the ages of 14-18 on June 16th, 2023 (International Students).


If you're looking for a real-world internship that can help boost your resume while applying to college, we recommend Ladder Internships!


Ladder Internships is a selective program equipping students with virtual internship experiences at startups and nonprofits around the world! 


The startups range across a variety of industries, and each student can select which field they would most love to deep dive into. This is also a great opportunity for students to explore areas they think they might be interested in, and better understand professional career opportunities in those areas. The startups are based all across the world, with the majority being in the United States, Asia and then Europe and the UK. 


The fields include technology, machine learning and AI, finance, environmental science and sustainability, business and marketing, healthcare and medicine, media and journalism and more.


You can explore all the options here on their application form. As part of their internship, each student will work on a real-world project that is of genuine need to the startup they are working with, and present their work at the end of their internship. In addition to working closely with their manager from the startup, each intern will also work with a Ladder Coach throughout their internship - the Ladder Coach serves as a second mentor and a sounding board, guiding you through the internship and helping you navigate the startup environment. 


Cost: $1490 (Financial Aid Available)

Location:  Remote! You can work from anywhere in the world.

Application deadline: April 16 and May 14

Program dates: 8 weeks, June to August

Eligibility: Students who can work for 10-20 hours/week, for 8-12 weeks. Open to high school students, undergraduates and gap year students!


Additionally, you can also work on independent research in AI, through Veritas AI's Fellowship Program!


Veritas AI focuses on providing high school students who are passionate about the field of AI a suitable environment to explore their interests. The programs include collaborative learning, project development, and 1-on-1 mentorship. These programs are designed and run by Harvard graduate students and alumni and you can expect a great, fulfilling educational experience. Students are expected to have a basic understanding of Python or are recommended to complete the AI scholars program before pursuing the fellowship. 


The AI Fellowship program will have students pursue their own independent AI research project. Students work on their own individual research projects over a period of 12-15 weeks and can opt to combine AI with any other field of interest. In the past, students have worked on research papers in the field of AI & medicine, AI & finance, AI & environmental science, AI & education, and more! You can find examples of previous projects here


Location: Virtual

Cost

  • $1,790 for the 10-week AI Scholars program

  • $4,900 for the 12-15 week AI Fellowship 

  • $4,700 for both

  • Need-based financial aid is available. You can apply here

Application deadline: On a rolling basis. Applications for fall cohort have closed September 3, 2023. 

Program dates: Various according to the cohort

Program selectivity: Moderately selective

Eligibility: Ambitious high school students located anywhere in the world. AI Fellowship applicants should either have completed the AI Scholars program or exhibit past experience with AI concepts or Python.

Application Requirements: Online application form, answers to a few questions pertaining to the students background & coding experience, math courses, and areas of interest. 


Stephen is one of the founders of Lumiere and a Harvard College graduate. He founded Lumiere as a Ph.D. 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: Johns Hopkins University

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