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Summer Camps and Programs for Students 18 and Under
There are more than 2000 accredited summer camps in the US that offer traditional summer camp programs as well as specialized academic, arts, sports, or travel camp summer programs to children and teenagers ages 7 – 18. It is wise to begin planning your child’s summer program at least 6 – 8 months prior to the time he/she would wish to begin the program. There is an enormous variety of programs to research and many of them require an early application to be assured of a place. There are numerous resource materials to help you select a summer camp that fits the needs and desires of your child and there are numerous online resources to use in your research.
In addition, some universities offer pre-collegiate summer programs for students who want to experience university before entering. Some of these programs are full academic programs which include courses for college credit while others are intended to offer an overview of university and campus life. You can research these programs online see the web site list below.
Summer School Programs at Universities and Colleges
During the summer period, most US colleges and universities offer a wide variety of courses and programs at the undergraduate and postgraduate level and are an excellent option for international students who have limited financial resources or can only spend a short length of time in the US.
Summer school sessions, which are held between June and August, have generally more flexible programming than during the rest of the school year. The summer school courses are usually short, anywhere from 5-8 weeks long and the classes usually meet every day or several times per week. The course work can be quite heavy, as a full semester’s course material is covered in this short time span. Some universities and colleges offer additional summer short-term programs that are not for college credit. They may be as short as a day long professional seminar or a several week long certificate course. The college campus during the summer months is usually less crowded and more relaxed than during the rest of the year. The classes are usually smaller and therefore provide easier opportunities to work more closely with professors and other students.
However there are drawbacks to summer school programs. Campus library and campus facility (i.e. computer and science labs) hours may be shorter, the social activities will be reduced in comparison to the usual activities during the academic year, the student body is considerably reduced, clubs and sport activities do not function during the summer months, etc.
Application for summer school programs is usually non-competitive and basically means that anyone who applies and can pay the course fees will be admitted and can take classes. (This is not a universal university policy so please check the summer school admissions policy at the institution you wish to attend) This is especially ideal for international students who want to spend some time on a US university campus but do not wish to go through the admissions process or, perhaps, may not have the qualifications necessary for entrance into a full degree program.
The cost of summer school programs can vary greatly but for international students the fees may prove to be less expensive during the summer session as there are no separate out-of-state tuition fees to pay. Tuition is charged per credit hour and can range from $100 per credit to $400 per credit hour for undergraduates and from $160 to $500 per credit hour for postgraduates. Remember one class could be several credit hours.
Visas for summer study programs can be quite complex. Most university summer programs are accustomed to working with international students and can suggest the appropriate visa for your particular program or check with the Visa section at the US Embassy in Bern to find out which visa you would qualify for.
It will be necessary to begin planning about 4-6 months prior to the time you wish to start a summer program. There is no one specialized directory for summer programs. Therefore, research for the right program for you could be a fairly lengthy process. A select number of Educational Resource Stations have guides and resource materials to help you in your search which you are welcome to use free of charge during their opening hours. In addition, check out the summer school section of individual university web sites, check out other sites listed in the Short Term training options in this web site and the web sites listed below.
- Accredited Summer Camp Programs, nationwide – http://www.cce.uri.edu/
- American Camping Association of New England – http://www.acane-camps.org/
- American Camping Association – http://www.acacamps.org/
- Nick Bollettieri Tennis Camps – http://www.bollettieri.com/
- Allen’s Guide to Summer Camps – http://www.allensguide.com
- Kid’s Camps – http://www.kidscamps.com/
- Shaw Guides – http://www.shawguides.com/
- Summer Study Programs – http://www.summerstudy.com
- Academic Study Associates – http://www.asaprograms.com
- National American Association of Summer Sessions – http://www.naass.org
- National Jurist On-Line, Domestic Summer Programs –http://www.nationaljurist.com
- UPCEA: University Professional and Continuing Education Association – http://www.upcea.edu/join
- Study Abroad – http://www.studyabroad.com
- MySummerCamps.com – http://www.mysummercamps.com/