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Wolfram's Summer Research Program for High School Students - Should You Do It?

If you’re a high school student interested in STEM, you may want to consider a STEM program!

Participating in STEM programs during high school can significantly boost your college application profile by showcasing your commitment to the field, enhancing your skills, and providing valuable research experience. One such prestigious program is the Wolfram High School Summer Research Program – learn more about it by reading the article below!

What is Wolfram's Summer Research Program?

The Wolfram High School Summer Research Program is a two-week intensive program designed for motivated high school students. It focuses on advancing programming and problem-solving skills through hands-on workshops, lectures, and active-learning activities. Students gain mastery of Wolfram Language and computational thinking, while working on research projects guided by expert mentors. Each participant writes a computational essay and an interactive research paper, which can be submitted to STEM competitions or academic journals.

How prestigious is the Wolfram High School Summer Research Program?

The Wolfram High School Summer Research Program is highly prestigious. Each year, around 60 students are accepted from around the world.

What is the structure of Wolfram’s Summer Research Program?

This year, the program will be held at Bentley University in Boston, MA from June 25 to July 13, 2024, and during these two weeks,students will experience a blend of hands-on workshops, lectures, and research activities designed to enhance computational thinking and programming skills. Each day includes structured sessions where students learn the Wolfram Language, participate in problem-solving activities, and work on individual research projects under expert mentorship. The program emphasizes real-world applications and culminates in students producing a computational essay and an interactive research paper – some of these works are featured on their website.

Important aspects to note include the program's intensive nature and its focus on personalized research projects tailored to students' interests. The program's rigorous schedule and collaborative environment ensure a deep and immersive learning experience, preparing students for further academic and professional pursuits in STEM fields. 

You should be prepared for a demanding yet highly rewarding two weeks, with ample opportunities for mentorship and skill development.

What does a typical day look like at the Wolfram Summer Research Program?

A typical day at the Wolfram Summer Research Program is packed with engaging and intellectually stimulating activities. Mornings usually start with workshops and lectures where students dive into the intricacies of the Wolfram Language and computational thinking. Afternoons are dedicated to collaborative research sessions, allowing participants to apply what they've learned to their projects with guidance from expert mentors. Evenings often feature guest speakers and group discussions, providing further inspiration and insight into cutting-edge STEM topics. 

What is the cost?

The cost of the program is $4200, including a $500 non-refundable deposit that is due within 14 days of admittance. Included in the cost of the program are a full-year access to Wolfram technologies and room & board for the duration of the main program.

For students who are eligible, the program offers needs-based financial aid on a sliding scale, which can cover up to 100% of tuition and room and board costs. However, financial aid will not cover transportation to and from the program.

Who is eligible to apply? How can I apply?

Eligibility for the Wolfram High School Summer Research Program is open to high school students (aged 14 to 17) with a strong interest in STEM fields. While prior programming experience is beneficial, it is not mandatory as a pre-program workshop is available to help students get up to speed. Applicants should demonstrate enthusiasm for computational thinking and a willingness to engage in intensive research activities.

To apply, prospective students need to complete an online application form, which includes submitting their academic records, a personal statement, and letters of recommendation. The application process is competitive, and students are encouraged to highlight their passion for STEM and any relevant experience. The application form will usually go live in December.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Tech Flex Leaders?


  1. You will enhance your computational thinking and programming skills. Participants engage in hands-on workshops and lectures that deepen their understanding of the Wolfram Language and computational thinking. This advanced knowledge is crucial for tackling complex problems and is highly valued in both academic and professional STEM fields.

  2. You will work on personalized research projects. Students have the opportunity to choose and develop projects tailored to their specific interests. This personalized approach ensures that each participant is fully engaged and motivated, allowing them to explore areas they are passionate about while making meaningful contributions to their chosen field.

  3. You will receive mentorship from experts. Experienced mentors guide students throughout the program, providing valuable insights and support. This mentorship helps students refine their projects, overcome challenges, and gain a deeper understanding of their research topics, enhancing the overall learning experience.

  4. You will collaborate with like-minded peers. The program brings together motivated and talented high school students from diverse backgrounds. This collaborative environment fosters teamwork, idea exchange, and long-lasting friendships, creating a strong network of peers who share a passion for STEM.

  5. You will gain valuable experience for college applications. Participating in a prestigious program like this significantly boosts a student's academic profile. The skills, knowledge, and achievements gained during the program are impressive additions to college applications, demonstrating a student's commitment to and excellence in their academics.

  6. You will have the opportunity to publish your work. Students produce a computational essay and an interactive research paper, which can be submitted to competitions or academic journals. This publication experience not only enhances a student's resume but also provides a sense of accomplishment and recognition for their hard work.


  1. You will experience a demanding and intensive schedule. The program's rigorous structure requires a high level of dedication and time commitment. Participants must balance workshops, lectures, and research projects, which can be overwhelming and exhausting, especially for those unaccustomed to such an intense pace.

  2. You may need some prior knowledge of programming. While a pre-program workshop is available, having some coding experience is beneficial. Students without a foundational understanding of programming might struggle initially, making it harder to keep up with the advanced topics covered.

  3. You will face a competitive admission process. The program's prestige and selective nature mean that only a limited number of students are accepted. Applicants must demonstrate exceptional academic performance and a strong passion for STEM, making the admission process highly competitive.

  4. You will need to travel to attend in-person events.  The program is currently available in specific locations such as New York City, Los Angeles, and Miami. That means you’ll need to find transportation to attend any in-person events like student orientation, Demo Days, and more. This can be inconvenient and costly, as it involves additional time and resources to attend in-person sessions. For some students, the need to travel may limit their ability to participate fully in the program.

Our Thoughts

The Wolfram High School Summer Research Program is a solid opportunity for motivated high school students passionate about STEM. It offers advanced computational and programming training, personalized research projects, and mentorship from experts. Despite its paid nature, demanding schedule and competitive admissions process, the benefits of enhanced skills, impressive college application credentials, and potential publication make it a recommended program for dedicated students. If you are interested after learning more about the program, you should definitely consider applying in the next application cycle! 

If you’re looking for a competitive mentored research program in subjects like data science, machine learning, political theory, biology, and chemistry, consider applying to Horizon’s Research Seminars and Labs

This is a selective virtual research program that lets you engage in advanced research and develop a research paper in a subject of your choosing. Horizon has worked with 1000+ high school students so far, and offers 600+ research specializations for you to choose from. 

You can find the application link here

One other option – Lumiere Research Scholar Program

If you are interested in doing university-level research in STEM or other subjects, which can become a topic to talk about in your college application, then you could also consider applying to the Lumiere Research Scholar Program, a selective online high school program for students founded with researchers at Harvard and Oxford. Last year, we had over 4000 students apply for 500 spots in the program! You can find the application form here.

Lydia is currently a junior at Harvard University, studying Molecular and Cellular Biology and Economics. In high school, she was the captain of her high school’s Academic Decathlon team and attended the Governor's School of Engineering and Technology. She aims to become a life sciences consultant after graduation. 

Image Source: Wolfram logo

1 Comment

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