Free Summer Programs For High School Students

Summer is an excellent time for high school students to explore new interests or expand on existing ones. Aside from the knowledge, it can be a plus on their resume. We’ve compiled a list of fantastic free summer programs for high school students in 2022 in today’s post. A growing number of selective colleges are beginning to look into how high school students spend their summers. 

As a result of this trend, some parents have spent thousands of dollars on summer programs that can provide an enriching experience, but they are insignificant in terms of distinguishing their child from the rest of the applicant pool. Summer programs for high school students are now available at most rival colleges for free. Many of these programs are free or inexpensive, and they can be an excellent addition to your application.

Of course, there may be a requirement to write an application essay. You are, however, free to use an essay writing service for help and concentrate on a summer program. Learn more about over 25 top Free Summer Programs for students in high school by reading this article.

Free Summer Programs for High School Students in 2022

You will not only have an exciting summer, but you will also have the opportunity to experience life on a college campus. You’ll learn about new fields that you might want to study in college. In the same vein, by clicking on any of the links, you can take advantage of the fantastic opportunities for Free-sponsored online Summer Programs and the Best Summer Jobs for students. A list of free summer programs for high school students in 2022 is provided below.

1. Annenberg Youth Academy for Media and Civic Engagement

The Annenberg Youth Academy for Media and Civic Engagement is a four-week intensive summer academy for 26 gifted high school students from the communities surrounding USC’s health science campuses. Students are exposed to the equivalent of freshman university courses, allowing them to develop a deep conceptual understanding and practical application of the critical role of media and journalism in the development of civic and innovative thought leaders. This is not a residential program.

2. Business Opportunities Summer Session (BOSS) at Penn State

BOSS is a two-week residential program for high school students interested in pursuing a business career after graduation. These students will have the opportunity to take college preparatory and business fundamentals classes taught by Penn State faculty. During their two-week stay at Penn State’s University Park campus, participants will also have the opportunity to experience college life by living in a college dorm. This is one of the best free summer programs for international high school students.

3. Carnegie Mellon University Summer Opportunities for Access and Inclusion

Their summer programs allow young people and seniors to focus on creativity and problem-solving in a challenging and supportive environment, laying the groundwork for future studies in a demanding university setting. Courses on Fine Arts, STEM, Artificial Intelligence, and other subjects are available. Students accepted into these programs will not be charged tuition, room, or board.

4. American Collegiate Adventures

American Collegiate Adventures offers free summer programs for international high school students both domestically and internationally. The programs range in length from one to five weeks, and all the details can be found on the website. For example, your 4-week program in Wisconsin takes place during the summer and covers the university admissions process.

5. Cornell University Curie Academy

Curie Academy is a one-week residential program for high-achieving female high school students who excel in math and science. The CURIE 2022 Academy will automatically consider older people on the rise (class of 2022) who are African-American, Latino, Native American/Alaska Native, or Pacific Islander, and/or the first generation who meet the requirements for an exemption from full enrollment. This is one of the best free summer programs for international high school students.

6. Telluride Association Summer Programs (TASP)

TASP is a six-week educational program for students in high school. Students attend seminars led by college and university faculty members, as well as educational and social activities outside the classroom. The Telluride Association is searching for students from all walks of life with a passion for learning and a desire to challenge themselves personally and intellectually. These programs do not provide grades or college credits.

7. Inspiring Girls Expeditions

Inspiring Girls Expeditions organizes wildlife expeditions for young women in Alaska, Switzerland, Canada, and other locations. They choose expedition teams of 8-9 teenage girls and three instructors each year to spend 12 days exploring and learning about a remote and wild environment. The girls will develop critical thinking skills, gain self-confidence, and form lasting friendships through scientific field studies with her team of professional scientists, artists, and wildlife guides.

8. Bentley University Summer Athletic Camps

Bentley University offers free summer programs for high school students. Bentley University’s Summer Athletic Camps have a reputation for being one of the best teaching fields for athletics in New England. Summer sports camps in basketball, volleyball, field hockey, and other sports are available at the university for high school students. Bentley camps provide students with the opportunity to learn game strategies and skills from top players and coaches in a fun and interactive environment with state-of-the-art facilities.

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9. University of Pennsylvania Programs for High School Students

Penn’s summer programs combine rigorous classroom and laboratory work with a variety of social activities, field trips, and excursions. Those who wish to live on campus or travel daily have options. Penn’s free summer programs for high school students offer a college-level experience, making the transition from high school to college easier. This is one of the best free summer programs for international high school students.

10. University of New Hampshire Upward Bound Summer Program

The University of New Hampshire Upward Bound Summer Program was created to help eligible students achieve their higher education goals through a free, federally funded college preparatory program. Students live on the University of New Hampshire’s campus for a six-week summer residential program, taking academic courses, participating in enrichment activities, receiving tutoring, and attending career workshops, college visits, and assisting with the university’s application process.

11. Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science (MITES)

This six-week program allows students to live on the MIT campus while taking five courses with homework and exams (physics, calculus, life sciences, humanities, and a STEM elective). Students will also participate in social events and build a community with their peers during the program. Our sponsors generously cover all educational, food, and boarding expenses. Only the cost of transportation to and from MIT is paid for by students.

12. Girls Coding Summer Immersion Programs

This is one of the best free summer programs for international high school students. Their summer immersion programs combine project-based learning with networking and connecting with women in high-tech companies, among other things. Current high school sophomores and high school girls are welcome to participate in the free seven-week program. Girls will learn to code and be exposed to jobs in the technology industry during summer programs. The programs are held in many cities across the country.

13. Pomona College Academy for Youth Success (PAYS)

During the intensive 4-week residential program, as well as throughout the academic year, PAYS provides 90 local high school students with the opportunity to participate in a variety of courses, cultural events, workshops, projects, and field trips. All expenses are covered by Pomona College, including lodging, meals, activities, and transportation to excursions. Only basic school supplies, such as pencils and paper, will be required of students.

14. Mathcamp

Mathcamp is a five-week summer program where students can learn about various mathematical principles. Students can learn about undergraduate and graduate subjects by connecting with a diverse group of people who all have a passion for math. Courses, problem-solving sessions, and lectures by renowned mathematicians are all part of the program. The program is open to students between the ages of 13 and 18. All applicants must complete a qualification questionnaire.

15. National Youth Science Camp (NYSC)

The National Youth Science Camp (NYSC) is a one-month intensive camp for young scientists held the summer after high school graduation. Students must show academic proficiency in math or science, as well as documented leadership abilities. Students from all over the country are challenged in conferences, field studies, and an outdoor adventure program, all of which are held in a rustic setting. This is one of the best free summer programs for international high school students.

16. JCamp

This is also part of the free online summer programs for high school students. You can’t go wrong with JCamp if you’re interested in journalism. It’s a six-day training camp where students learn from veteran journalists and thought leaders in the media. The program covers topics like leadership fundamentals, journalism ethics, and the value of diversity in media coverage. Diversity is emphasized, as is listening to diverse voices and perspectives from various cultures.

Despite the organization’s name, the program is not only for Asian Americans. All that is required of you is that you are a high school student with a strong interest in journalism. The application process is free, as are the costs of the program, lodging, and travel to the location.

Because the 2020 edition of JCamp was canceled due to COVID, the 2021 edition will be held online with the students who were chosen for the 2020 edition. This means you’ll have to wait until 2022 to submit your application.

17. Princeton Summer Journalism Program

The PSJP is a 10-day free summer programs for international high school students from historically underrepresented backgrounds who are interested in journalism to the various opportunities available in the field.

  • Provide them with the fundamental skills they’ll need to contribute to your newspaper and create a brief documentary,
  • Take them to New York’s major news outlets to present different perspectives on the types of post-secondary education needed for the job.

This is one of the free summer programs for high school students online. During the summer program, all travel, lodging, food, and supplies are covered, though students are encouraged to bring money to buy souvenirs or treat themselves off-campus.

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18. California State Summer School for Mathematics and Science (COSMOS)

COSMOS (California State Math and Science Summer School) is a four-week summer residential program that allows high school students with demonstrated skills in STEM subjects (science, technology, math, and engineering) to explore subjects outside their regular secondary school curriculum. Students can collaborate on advanced topics with faculty, renowned scientists, and researchers, as well as gain access to cutting-edge laboratory environments and facilities. Participants will also be able to take university-level courses and learn about educational and career options in the STEM fields.

19. Sadie Nash Summer Institute

The Summer Institute is a 6-week summer program for self-identified young women in high school in the New York / Newark, NJ area that has won numerous awards. A weekly stipend and an unlimited MetroCard are provided to all participants. Social justice classes, field trips, workshops, and meetings with female leaders are all part of the program.

20. Carnegie Mellon University – Summer Academy for Mathematics + Science (SAMS)

SAMS programs are designed for high school students who are entering their senior year or who are interested in mathematics-based disciplines such as engineering or science. The six-week practical program is based on the academic and personal skills required for admission to the best universities and takes place at Carnegie Mellon University. It focuses on technical areas of study and is based on the academic and personal skills required for admission to the best universities.

21. USC Bovard Scholars

The USC Bovard Scholars program provides a three-week summer residency on the USC campus for students to experience college life firsthand. Students will work with a dedicated admissions coach throughout the university application process after the summer program ends. The program is free for students and their families to participate in. For students coming from outside of Southern California, USC will pay for transportation to and from campus.

22. Husson University Early College Access Programs (ECAP)

Husson University’s Early College Access Programs (ECAP) is one of the free programs for high school students. Senior and junior high school students enroll in tuition-free programs to earn credits that count toward a degree program through Husson’s Early College Access Programs (ECAP). ECAP is only open to seniors and juniors in high school who want to study free online programs and have a cumulative GPA of at least 80 or equivalent.

Students who have been accepted into ECAP can take up to two courses in a single semester for a total of 21 points for two years, depending on course space availability. Some courses have specific requirements that must be met for a student to be enrolled. This is one of the best free summer programs for international high school students.

23. National History Academy Online For High School Students

The National History Academy is one of the best schools for free online summer programs for high school students interested in law, history, and the United States government. The National History Academy provides students with a stimulating and desirable learning environment. Every week, students spend two days visiting historic sites and delving deeply into major themes related to the country’s current challenges.

The academies’ website allows students to interact with professionals in the classroom. Students can participate in as few as one program or as many as four in their free online summer programs for high school students, which are held four times a year. The following is a list of the four programs in chronological order:

  • “James Madison, the ‘Federal Negative,’ and the Making of the U.S. Constitution” – July 6- July 10 
  • “A Nation Divided: The United States and the Challenge of Secession” – July 13- July 17 
  • “Martin Luther King and the Struggle for Black Voting Rights” – July 20- July 24 
  • “Democracy and Women’s Rights in America: The Fight Over the ERA – July 27- July 31 

24. K12 Tuition-Free Online Summer Programs For High School Students

This is one of the best free summer programs for international high school students. Students entering grades 9–12 in the fall can attend the academy for tuition-free online summer programs for high school students and earn credits while exploring high-demand career fields in their various schools of learning during the summer. The academy offers three different types of tuition-free programs, which are listed below.

  • Business and Marketing Programs

Students have the opportunity to look into both business and marketing programs and decide which one they want to pursue. The fundamentals of marketing, human resources management, and financial management are taught to students. They must also complete projects to gain a professional understanding of the work of these business functions in actual businesses.

  • Healthcare Programs

Students are also introduced to various aspects of health care and medical science, which they study and choose which part to pursue. Disease prevention, personal health management, and social work are among the concepts taught to students. They must also complete projects to gain a thorough understanding of the various aspects of health care.

  • IT Programs
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Students are also exposed to a variety of technologically related careers and are allowed to choose which ones they want to pursue. These careers include networking information support, web and digital communications, and programming and software development. They must also complete projects for their various courses to maintain their professionalism. 

25. Norwich University of Arts Free Online Summer Workshops

The Norwich University of Arts is without a doubt one of the best universities in Norwich for high school students looking for free online summer programs. Norwich University of the Arts is offering free Summer School workshops to high school students between the ages of 14 and 19. Students learn a variety of skills, ranging from designing album covers to sculpturing, expressive painting, and character design. 

NUA staff and graduates teach students new skills and assist them in developing a creative portfolio for the university. Students participate in sessions to learn how to put together a unique portfolio and explore the many opportunities available in the creative industries as part of this free online summer program for high school students. Participants in the NUA Summer School programs will receive an official certificate that can be added to their CV.

To receive a certificate, attendees must attend a minimum of 6 workshops and submit the results of at least three workshops to the university. The two most popular of their numerous programs are listed below:

  • 2D Animation Character Design with Recycled Materials

What exactly is required? For this workshop, you’ll need to gather some recycled materials. You will learn skills that can be applied to Visual Effects, Animations, Games, Illustration, Art, and Designs in the workshop.

  • An Introduction to Typography Design

Jamie Johnstone, a BA Graphic Design lecturer, will give an introductory talk and workshop on the various applications of typography design in the creative industry. For this workshop, you’ll need to gather a few small household items. Skills learned in the workshop: You will learn skills that can be applied to Illustrations, Graphics, and Fine Art.


Alternatives To Summer Programs 

There are other ways to gain experience in your field of choice if you’re looking for something other than traditional academic learning. If you were interested in writing, for example, you could take matters into your own hands and begin writing online. You can start a blog, write articles for Medium, or even work with magazines or local newspapers. There’s no limit to what you can achieve.

Volunteering is another excellent way to gain relevant experience. Internships and summer jobs are also beneficial, though finding the type of work you want may be difficult. They will look great on your future college applications and provide you with relevant real-world experience. Do you have a fascination with biology? Offer to work at a zoo or a marine park as a volunteer.

There are always alternatives to formal academic training for furthering your education. Consider your objectives and how you can achieve them. Begin at the end and work your way backward to determine the best course of action.



Remember that attending one of these free summer programs for high school students in 2022 is not required for admission to a selective university. Students who want an exciting summer experience outside their area while also improving their student applicant profile should look into the above-mentioned free summer programs for high school students in 2022.

If you want to do your Summer Program abroad, you might have a chance to do so if you use the link to access the Affordable Summer Study Abroad. During your summer vacation, you can also learn a second language.


Frequently Asked Questions 

Is It Possible To Improve Your Gpa By Taking Summer Classes?

If you’ve completed two classes and have a 2.0 GPA, a B (3.0) in a summer course will raise your GPA to 2.33. Keep in mind that you must get a better grade in the summer course than your current GPA to improve your cumulative average.

What Is The Best Way For Me To Get Into A Good High School?

Here are a few options for getting into the high school of your choice:

  1. In the three to four years leading up to high school, get good grades in your classes.
  2. Prepare for standardized tests by taking practice exams.
  3. Attend every class to demonstrate your dedication to learning.
  4. Get involved in activities outside of class.

What Should High School Students Do In The Summer?

Here are some summer activities for high school students:

  • Participate in a specialized high school program.
  • Take a college class.
  • Find a summer program at a local school or community college.
  • Get involved with research.
  • Make a project of your own.
  • Find a job.
  • Become a business owner.

Is It Possible For Incoming Freshmen To Enroll In Summer Classes?

If your college offers a summer session for incoming freshmen, enrolling in a class is a great way to get acquainted with the campus before the rest of your class arrives in the fall.

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