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Pre College Summer Programs 2021

Last Updated on October 24, 2021 by Omotomiwa Lydia

Programs are ranked by overall value, based on their cost and student satisfaction. Other data comes from IPEDS and Niche.

1. University of Washington

The University of Washington’s Summer Institute for Mathematics offers one of Washington State’s best pre-college summer programs for high school students with its four, 2-week intensive online classes for motivated students interested in exploring the nature of mathematics from theory to application. As one of the best pre-college summer programs available in the Northwest, the University of Washington’s are modified from year to year but previously have included combinatorics, methods of argument, and game theory, to name a few. Applicants must be 14 years old by mid-March before the summer program and have completed three years of high school math.

Established in the early-1860s, the University of Washington is the state’s flagship campus and a recognized ‘public ivy’ league school. The University of Washington is recognized among the oldest of all schools on the west coast.  

Format: Online

2. Purdue University

Purdue University offers one of Indiana’s best pre-college summer programs for high school students, with its Summer College for High School Students that allows high school students to explore college life through a hybrid-delivered mix of courses and workshops. Students enrolled in Purdue University’s best pre-college summer programs offer students one, four, eight, and twelve-week options that allow students to plan around their summer studies. Students have the option of living on campus but must be 16 years old and have completed their sophomore year with a GPA (cumulative) of 3.3).

Established in the late-1860s by businessman John Purdue, Purdue University is now the flagship campus of the Purdue system of universities and also a space-grant and sea-grant school. The school offers nearly 300 academic degrees for undergraduate and graduate students. Purdue’s student enrollment of approximately 43,250 students makes it the second largest school in the Hoosier state.

Format: undecided

3. North Carolina State University

North Carolina State University offers some of North Carolina’s best pre-college summer programs for high school students that are available for students from ages 14 to 17. IN addition to a traditional 4H camp, there are programs for those students interested in plant science or veterinary medicine or North Carolina State’s CAMINOS pre-college program that facilitates the transition to college for juniors or seniors. Another of North Carolina State’s best pre-college summer programs includes the communication camp for those high school students with a serious career interest in TV production, public speaking, or broadcasting, among others.

Established by the state assembly in the late 1880s, North Carolina State University (NC State), a land-grant school, is now a member school of the UNC system and a land-grant university. The school’s urban Raleigh campus covers more than two thousand acres and serves approximately 35,750 students. NCSU’s campus is divided into three primary sections, with the oldest parts dedicated to academics.

Format: On-Campus


The University of California, Los Angeles’ Summer Sessions offers one of California’s best pre-college summer programs for high school students that allows high school students to earn college credits during UCLA’s 1 to 3 week concentrated sessions. UCLA’s best pre-college summer programs are offered to students across the globe as they are all remote learning options. These pre-college sessions for high school students provide opportunities across a number of options like a ‘mock trial,’ acting/performance, science lab, game lab, economics lab, or the critical thinking institute, to name a few.

UCLA was established in 1919 as a public school. UCLA is the second oldest of the state’s university’s ten campuses. Additionally, this land-grant and space-grant school is home to more than 45,350 students vying for degrees and diplomas online and on-campus. Forbes ranks UCLA among the top schools in terms of value for a public university.

Format: Remote only

5. Georgia Tech

The Design College at Georgia Tech offers one of Georgia’s best pre-college summer programs for high school students through a variety of video conferencing for students interested in design. These best pre-college summer programs are open to students who have at least completed their sophomore year in high school. Participants engage in discussions, guided exercises, and live classes, with a max class size of 28. Students have the choice of two sessions, with each session offering a modified focus in one session in music technology design.

The Georgia Institute of Technology ( G. Tech) is a multiple campus institution of higher education that was founded in the mid-1880s as part of plans to rebuild the south after the civil war. Georgia Tech is a space-grant school with more than 36,400 students and an endowment that exceeds $2 billion. Students hailing from outside Georgia come from NJ, Florida, Texas, NC, and Virginia, among others.

Format: PreCollege Design offered via video conferences

6. University of Texas at Austin

The Summer Discovery program at the University of Texas at Austin offers high school students in Texas some of the best pre-college summer programs across a number of topics for students who are aged 14 through 18. These UT best pre-college summer programs for high school students, which are available entirely online, include fashion computer tech, python programming, law/society, sports medicine, public speaking, or digital media/marketing. Each of these summer discovery programs is available for grades 9 through 12 and runs three weeks until completion.

Established in the mid-1880s, the University of Texas at Austin is a member of the state’s university system and the flagship campus. The school’s 400+ acre campus is home to seventeen libraries and more than 50,650 students. the University of Texas Austin is recognized as one of the few public ivy league universities across the United States.

Format: Online

Pre College Summer Programs 2021 Columbia



All Summer at Columbia courses are 3 credit hours, pulled directly from the undergraduate catalog, and taught by Columbia faculty. This means you’ll experience the same syllabus, homework, and projects as the regular school year and have the opportunity to earn transferrable credits that can also be used toward your degree, should you matriculate to Columbia.


Students engage virtually with creative industry leaders from around the world through faculty curated guest lectures and Q+A sessions. Summer at Columbia alumni consistently rank this element of the program as one of the most impactful as they consider their academic and professional futures.


Each cohort includes a Student Mentor, a current Columbia student majoring in the content area, who provides both academic support and guidance into the Columbia student experience during weekly one-on-one check-ins. Meanwhile, virtual events introduce the various resources at Columbia College Chicago like the Career Center, Student Financial Services, Admissions, Student Employment, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and Columbia administration.


$2,205 USD

Tuition is based off the standard $735 per credit hour rate (x3 credit hours = $2,205.) Also included in the Summer at Columbia program at no additional charge:

  • Creative industry guest speaker events;
  • Columbia email account;
  • Microsoft Office 365 for the duration of the program;
  • Canvas, Columbia’s Learning Management System;
  • Support from Academic Technology and Community Education staff.