A Guide for Prepared Parents
How to Stand Out
Good grades and scores alone don’t make a student stand out.
Making Students 3D
The right summer activities can help build his/her story and bring them to life/3D. Especially for schools that don’t allow interviews, essays, and/or teacher recommendations.
Show Don’t Tell
You are not trying to impress people, you are trying to show people who you are, what makes you tick, or specific parts about you
Misconceptions About Good Grades
There are a ton of students with the same or similar numbers. Many students are trying to get great grades and scores…it isn’t an anomaly anymore to have great grades and scores.
What Makes Students Different
The differentiating criteria are the outside (school) activities, essays, interviews, portfolios, and teacher recs.
How Summer Activities Can Help Your Child
How to make my child unique, tell their story, and still have fun each summer.
The Early Bird Gets the Worm
Summer programs fill up quickly and you need to schedule far in advance
Spots in programs are filled on a first come first served basis…not a lottery after the deadline…the early bird gets the worm.
Have a backup plan if you get waitlisted / Apply to more than one
Don’t Follow the Crowd
Don’t do stuff with a bunch of friends / people from your high school
Students might need recommendations from teachers / may need them at the same time teachers are filling out recs for seniors
Summer Enrichment FAQ
What summer activities look best to colleges?
What is a good resume builder?
Does it matter if my child takes a trip to do service work or does it locally?
Is it best to join National Charity League or pick my own service work
Finding the Right Summer Programs
Parents want their kids to do whatever benefits them the most in the eyes of admissions officers when they apply to college
Community Service / Rustic Pathways
Faith Based Programs / Vacation Bible School
Politics & Leadership
- Politics & Leadership Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
National Youth Leadership Forum
Academic Enrichment Programs
- History & Archaeology Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- Archaeology Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- Language Immersion Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- STEM Summer Program Search – “The Institute for Broadening Participation’s database includes 1244 programs in a variety of disciplines and education levels.”
- STEM Internships – @ The US Department of Defense – “DoD STEM internships allow high school and college students the opportunity to engage in hands-on research, solving real-world problems at DoD laboratories and facilities.”
- Database of STEM Internships & Summer Opportunities – Maryland Business Roundtable for Education
- Stanford Office of Science Outreach Internship Programs – Stanford University
- Summer Science Internships – Johns Hopkins University
- Includes Astronomy & Physics, Biomedical Science, Engineering, Biology & Environmental Science, and General Science
- MIT Summer Technology Programs – “MIT does not offer a traditional open-enrollment summer school program where any high school student can come to campus to take courses and live in the dorms. However, several partner organizations run small, specialized programs on campus.”
- Math Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- Computer Science Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- Game Development Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- Summer Music Programs – Berklee College of Music
- Solo & Chamber Summer Music Institute @ St. Mary’s University Maryland
- Chicago Chamber Music Summer Workshop – “Midwest Young Artists Conservatory’s nationally recognized Chicago Chamber Music Workshop (CCMW) offers students an unparalleled musical experience in a fun and supportive environment. “
- Summer Music Programs – Boston University Tanglewood Institute
- Chamber Festival Music Festival & Camp
- NYU Summer Music Programs
- High School Summer Music Programs – Interlochen
- Summer Honors Music Institute @ Penn State University
- Summer Music Programs – Johns Hopkins University
Creative Writing & Journalism
- Creative Writing & Journalism Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- Creative Writing Summer Programs – Interlochen
- Visual Arts Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- Architecture Summer Programs – Johns Hopkins University
- High School Summer Film Programs – Interlochen
- Summer Visual Arts Programs – Interlochen
Job / Internship / Mentorship / Shadowing Opportunities
Plain Ole Summer Camp
Personal Growth Programs / Outward Bound / NOLS
Custom Summer Programs / Build Your Own
Using summer activities to showcase your child
Free for Parents
What every parent needs to know about summer activities before your child starts high school
The best summer program for your child isn’t the one you think colleges want to see
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