Working at a summer job can certainly help save money for college, but think about investing some time at a summer program on a college campus. Many are free or low cost, with scholarship options. The right choice can help you learn what it's like to be in a 4-year college, where your career interests can lead you, and how to connect with more people who can help you in the college process.
Helpful Hints for Finding the Right Summer Program for You:
Find a program that fits your academic area of interest or just narrow down the list of things that seem of interest.
- Many colleges and universities host summer programs for high school students. Finding a program on a college campus will expose you to the college experience and help orient you for college life.
- Ask the local colleges about the programs they offer. Or, if you know what college you might want to attend, look there.
- Many programs are associated with some type of cost, so be mindful of that. If cost is a concern, ask the program if they have financial aid or fee waivers. And also be aware that there are free summer programs available.
- Registration deadlines are extremely important. Some programs accept every student who applies, and some are very selective. The best way to ensure your selection is to apply early. Make sure all necessary documentation is in your application so that it can be processed and so that you can be considered for the program of your choice.
In the end, you should pick the summer enrichment program that is the best fit for you academically and socially. Choose something in which you have a serious interest, and ask as many questions as you can about the program you choose so that you know exactly what to expect.
Listed below are websites that provide information about many summer programs.
Enrichment Alley: www.enrichmentalley.com/ is a database of summer programs, and can by searched by state or type of program. Each listing has a brief description of the program (including cost and application information), with a link to the program's webpage.
Service Opportunities: www.dosomething.org is one of the largest organizations in the U.S. that helps young people rock causes they care about. A driving force in creating a culture of volunteerism, DoSomething.org is on track to activate two million young people in 2011.
Summer Computer Camps: www.internaldrive.com offers award winning technology at top universities in the U.S. including 3D video game design, web design, Flash, programming, iPhone apps, robotics, video editing, and more.
School of Cinema and Performing Arts: www.socapa.org SOCAPA's summer programs in Los Angeles are hosted at Occidental College and include film making, acting for film, dance, photography, and screen writing camps.
Summer Discovery: www.summerdiscovery.com has information on the world's finest and most popular summer pre-college enrichment programs at UCLA, UCSB, UCSD, Michigan, Georgetown, Culinary Institute at PENN, Emerson in Boston; England, Spain, Italy, and China.
Oxbridge Academic Programs: www.oxbridgeprograms.com offers a wide range of summer study programs in England, in Oxford and Cambridge; in France, in Spain, and in New York.