Cornell Summer Programs

July 16, 2020
By AdmissionSight

Cornell Summer Programs – Why you should enrol and program options to consider

Every high school student has his/her eyes set on one goal – increasing the odds of getting in a top college of their choice. But, admission rates to Ivies and other esteemed colleges are dropping significantly, year on year.

A college of the likes of Harvard or Yale isn’t looking for a perfect 4.0 GPA. Top grades and high SAT scores are very commonplace now. Every second or third application received by admission officers of these colleges has excellent academic results. Nothing impressive about them! Unless you are able to prove your passion towards a subject, in a way that grades can’t, the chances of your admission application making the cut are sadly quite dim.

Cornell University Aerial View

And, if you are wondering, where is the time for you to really work on some interesting projects that showcase your potential and passion? Thank god for summers! From boosting your extracurricular profile to taking up paid or unpaid internships high school students to pursuing research in a preferred subject, there is a lot you can look forward to during your summer break. You also have the option to enrol for a summer program. These programs are designed keeping in mind what it takes to develop well rounded high schoolers who are ready and prepared for college and beyond.

No matter where your interests, skills, and passions lie, be assured that there is a perfect summer program for you. In fact, there are several that you can choose from. However, it is in your best interest that you pick wisely.

Do your homework. Perform in-depth research on the kind of courses offered in these summer programs. Double-check the accreditation of the school offering the summer program. Talk to someone who may have attended the summer program in the past. Or, you could even get in touch with us about your doubts and concerns. Our advice will come handy when shortlisting a summer program of choice.

For example, if you are trying to figure out what criteria you should be basing your summer program selection on, we’d suggest opting for those programs that are run by prestigious colleges, such as Simons Research Program, Boston University Rise, etc.

In this blog post, we discuss at length, courses offered by one such distinguished college – Cornell. For highly driven students pursuing a course of choice offered under Cornell, Summer Programs tops the ‘Summer Break To-Do’ list. Top colleges like Cornell University, understand that summer programs are once in a lifetime opportunity for students to expand their learning horizons.

Sure, a summer program from Cornell is very likely to win your college application the necessary attention. But, more importantly, Cornell Summer Programs will transform you in ways that take up any amount of volunteering or part-time internship won’t. Numerous unique opportunities await you at Cornell University’s summer program, each bringing with it immense learning and thoroughly enriching summer experiences.

Another important objective for attending summer programs for such colleges is to familiarize you with college life and ease anxiety levels, which today, is quite commonly seen in teenagers.

Also, you will be studying in-depth about the courses you wish to major in, while attending a summer program at a reputable University, from the best faculty expert in these areas.

The benefits of pursuing any of the Cornell Summer Programs are umpteen, five of which we’ve detailed on in the upcoming section.

Cornell Summer Programs – Top 5 Reasons why you should enrol today

Cornell is a highly revered name in the list of Ivy League schools. Needless to say, spending even a week or two attending any of the Cornell Summer Programs will prove to be an enriching experience for life. As far as tangible benefits are concerned, we’ve listed five of them in this section:

1. Get trained and mentored by the best in class faculty

To help you accomplish the most out of your Cornell Summer Programs, you’ll be mentored and guided by some of the brightest minds who possess an unmatched proficiency in their respective fields of work. The best thing about learning from these experts is that they all nurture great love for teaching and are ever-hungry for learning. This passion that they teach with can turn even the driest of topics into an immersive and engrossing subject.

2. Specialize in a subject of choice

The Cornell Summer Program, especially the pre-college course, lays tremendous emphasis on academics. That said, the curriculum also gears students up for life outside the classroom walls. The programs are designed to closely explore subjects that they’d like to pursue in college and beyond. Specializing in a summer program at Cornell gives you ample opportunities to reflect on the career choices you are planning to make. As such, you get to learn a lot about the industry. Having completed your course you will find yourself equipped to make better decisions when selecting the subject you wish to major in.

3.Boost your college application

We’ve emphasized this multiple times in this post and in most of our other blog posts on summer programs – your experience and learnings from attending a summer program can certainly give your college application a leg up. College admission officers are looking for well-rounded students who are ready for college-level learning and can make valuable contributions to their college community. As such, your exhibited passion and exceptional work at Cornell summer program can prove to be that golden-ticket which outshines all other application essays and wins you a seat in a coveted college. Also, if you haven’t been able to pursue an extracurricular activity or don’t have a perfect GPA, a summer program at Cornell could add that much-needed boost to your applicant profile.

4. Get a glimpse of college life

When attending any of the Cornell Summer Programs you will be staying on the campus, learning from the best of faculty, specializing in a course that you wish to major in, and getting to experience everything that college is about. Think of it as a brief introductory phase into college. The summer program will be just as competitive, challenging, and exciting, as college life. From lectures to experiments to research – it’s going to be an all-encompassing experience. Additionally, while participating in a summer program run by a college you’ll be able to determine if it should be your preferred college for higher studies.

5. Ample time to relax and pursue other interests

Most of the summer programs offered at Cornell run for about a week or two. So, in case you are worried that enrolling for one will leave you with no time for volunteering or taking up a part-time summer job, or preparing for a national-level competition like the Scripps Spelling Bee, you needn’t worry. You’ll have plenty of time at hand to balance other obligations and alongside have some fun, after having completed an extensive course at various Cornell Summer Programs.

Students walking in the school grounds

Having detailed these benefits, we’d still want you to get all your questions answered before enrolling in a course of choice at Cornell Summer Program. After all, it is a critical decision for a high schooler and these programs aren’t free of cost. One of our top recommendations is that you get in touch with students who have previously attended a summer program at Cornell. Student stories shared online can also get you an inside scoop about what your one or two weeks at Cornell would look like. Read on to know what past summer program attendees have to say about Cornell Summer Programs.

Student stories from the Cornell Summer Programs

Students who’ve previously attended a summer program of choice at Cornell, have penned their learnings and experience in-depth. We bring you two such stories about how a summer at Cornell turned out for them. Here’s what they share.

This one is from Bailey Landow, who attended Cornell Summer Program. During the program, she says, she became sure about two things: a) That Cornell would be her preferred choice of college b) She was prepared and ready to adapt to a totally new different world, which was nothing like where she came from.

Summer program participants

Landow was always interested in Social Psychology and attending summer college at Cornell further deepened her love for the subject. She learned about the diverse career options that the field would open her up to, and even pursued research in the Laboratory for Rational Decision Making. Looking back at her life at Cornell summer college, she recalls that she was fascinated to explore a new place as all her life she had lived in a small town. In her words, “ Dorm style living was also so different than anything I had ever experienced but was a great way to meet a diverse group of people taking different summer classes.”

Some of Cornell’s pre-college summer program stories from high school students are really interesting. Students have talked at length and with great zeal about how treasured their experience was. Pooja Bhate, for example, gives a full account of her days at Cornell.

She writes, “Just in this first week, my classmates and I have already read around 300 pages of our international human rights textbook, which looks intimidating, with over 1,500 pages of pure text and no images. In class, we’ve reviewed our readings and debated over cultural and social human rights issues that bother us on the most basic of levels. The coursework is hard; a lot of dense textbook reading every night accompanied by treaty deciphering, and tons of mind-boggling and eye-opening ideas that have made my classmates and I read the text twice, maybe thrice, just to understand the true viewpoints and theories behind it. We all expected to be challenged; it’s the basic reason why we are at Cornell, but none of us was truly prepared for this academic storm that would soak our minds with our vocabulary words and enlighten our minds with conflicting viewpoints.” Amidst all this, she recalls, there were several fun-filled moments with friends she made at Cornell. Everything about Cornell seemed magical to her – be it the windows of the Uris Library, the way the clock tower chimed, or how the sky hues turned pink-orange at night.

While most student stories on Cornell’s website are from students who have attended pre-college Cornell Summer Program, Cornell offers various other courses for high-schoolers.

We’ve rounded up six summer programs at Cornell that may suit your unique interests and goals. Let’s take them one by one.

Important Note: In the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, Universities offering summer programs are trying their level best to smoothly keep the programs functional. Cancelling programs is not an option as colleges know how critical each program is for students working hard for college admissions. Many on-campus Cornell Summer Programs have been or are being converted into online courses so that learning needn’t be paused.

6 courses for high-schoolers offered at the Cornell Summer Programs

Cornell Summer Programs offer courses ranging from architecture, engineering, veterinary medicine, hospitality, and operations to science, maths, social change, and many more. What’s impressive about these courses is that they go beyond traditional STEM courses and dig deeper into the fields that attendees see themselves pursuing as a career. This way, these are truly reflective of the subject that you or any other high-school would want to take up as a ‘major’ specialization.

You may enrol for any of the following summer courses at Cornell.

1. Animal science

High-school falls short on teaching students the necessary skills for animal handling. And, if working on a farm is something you hold dear since childhood, or if caring for zoo animals is your calling, you can think about pursuing a summer program in Animal Science at Cornell. It happens to be one of Cornell Summer Programs that can help you showcase your passion for animal science in your essay prompts for the common application. Alongside field trips and lectures you also get to learn practical skills about livestock handling or agricultural management. At the end of the program, you’ll have complete clarity on academic and career options that open up for you if you plan to pursue Animal Science as a field of higher studies.

2. Art as Experience: Drawing, Photography & Printmaking

Budding artists can look forward to exploring the history of contemporary art, exploring the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, and visit the Tjaden Gallery, during their summer program at Cornell. Alongside, you’ll be involved in art collaborations, research, critique and other aspects of the subject. You’ll gain first-hand experience in material exploration and art collaboration, research, exhibition, and critique. If you are keen to pursue this summer program from a host of other Cornell Summer Programs, look forward to some exciting out-of-class studio work. You may also be required to create your own art project that you will present to the public at the end of the program.

Gallery in the school

3. The Business World

The corporate world has a fascinating charm. And, many youngsters aspire to hold a leadership or management role in their future, in enterprises and even in startups. Some see themselves heading their own business. For such students, this three-week course will prove quite beneficial. If undertaking this course, you will learn the basics of business management and will be introduced to issues being faced by businesses today. As a part of your practical training, you’ll work in groups to mimic business challenges and propose innovative solutions. This simulation exercise will bring you face-to-face with the real work and tasks that managers need to deliver on regularly. Your project may range from preparing data-based reports to decision making to goal setting to staff motivation and leadership, and much more.

4. Debate and Rhetoric

One of the most popular courses of Cornell Summer Programs, Debate and Rhetoric, is intense and offers great learning to everyone. Although sought after mostly by those interested in politics and social sciences, this program has a lot to offer even if you wish to pursue mathematics, architecture, or any other subject. The idea of debate and rhetoric is to sharpen critical thinking, build confidence, and polish a student’s oratory skills – all of which are important aspects of a strong personality. Taking up this course means you will walk out better equipped with the principles of arguments and debates. The idea is to mould you into a confident public speaker who can command interest and pull the crowd in. Intrigued? Be prepared for healthy classroom discussions and debates on a range of topics such as biowarfare, ban on plastic, punishment vs. reward, and even genetically modified crops.

5. The Fashion Studio: Portfolio Development

Students who’ve always stunned everyone around with their exclusive sense of style have a chance to meet and work with equally passionate and fashion-forward minds at this Cornell Summer Program. Know that Cornell’s Department of Fiber Science and Apparel Design is perhaps the best to learn from if you are serious about pursuing a career in fashion. It won’t be wrong to state that, in fact, Cornell’s Department of Fiber Science & Apparel Design, is the only department of its kind amongst the Ivies. Students pursuing fashion studies at Cornell have access to some of the most advanced technologies while working on hands-on projects. Think laser-cutters and 3D body scanners. It’s impossible for most other Ivy League colleges to match the kind of exposure that Cornell provides in this field of study.

Fashion show of students

6. Entrepreneurship in Food and Beverage Industry

If you have a family restaurant business or dream of opening one someday, this program will hone your business skills ranging from supply chain management to understanding food and beverage industry laws to analyzing market forces, and more. Like most other Cornell Summer Programs this too will be a non-book-ish experience. You’ll learn by undertaking research and team projects. In small groups, students will be required to conduct research, come up with business ideas, define their target audience, put forth their value proposition, etc. In short, working in teams, you will need to come up with a strong business plan for the restaurant. You may also be required to present your business plan to your fellow program attendees, at the end of the activity.

These are just six out of fifteen or more Cornell Summer Programs that are listed on Cornell’s website. No matter which program you opt for the selection criteria for all is the same. While applying for a course of choice from the list of Cornell Summer Programs carefully go through the fee structure and grade requirements. If the stated requirements are something you can fulfil the next step is to prepare your application prompts. Just like college applications, these prompts will be evaluated by officers at Cornell to get to know you better and to understand whether you are truly passionate about the course that you wish to enrol for.

But, what should you do in case you aren’t sure about how to come up with an impressive application prompt? Also, what if the fee of the program seems overwhelming? Should you be looking at some other summer programs?

At Ivycollegeadmit we are keen to help clarify all such doubts and questions. Committed to helping students get placed in the most competitive schools and colleges of their choice, we help them select the right summer program and extracurriculars to boost their profile. Need help with anything related to your summer program prompts or with your extracurricular planning? All you need to do is reach out!




Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up now to receive insights on
how to navigate the college admissions process.