Engineering Summer Programs for High School Students

Instructor: Carrie Soucy
Summer engineering programs for high school students are available at a variety of colleges and institutions across the country. Read on to learn about the different types of programs and typical admission requirements.

Summer Engineering Programs for High School Students

High school students interested in summer engineering programs will find both residential and day camp options available. Some programs focus on a specific engineering discipline, while others introduce students to engineering in general. There are also summer engineering programs designed for certain groups, such as girls or minorities. The cost and age requirements vary by program.

Popular Summer Engineering Programs

Cornell Engineering Experience

The Engineering Experience program at Cornell University is a six-week summer residential program that exposes high school juniors and seniors to engineering careers and practices. Along with engineering courses, lab work, and design training, the program allows attendees to take additional courses in a variety of disciplines, ranging from computer science to art. In 2016, the program cost was about $12,000, excluding books and supplies.


The Science and Engineering Apprenticeship Program (SEAP) provides high school students with opportunities to work as research apprentices in labs operated by the Department of the Navy, which are located across the country. Students spend eight weeks working alongside engineers and scientists and are paid a stipend. This is not a residential program, so students should apply to Department of Navy labs near their homes. Applicants must be at least 15 to be eligible for these positions.

H.O.T Days @ Georgia Tech

Hands-on Technology (H.O.T) Days comprise a week-long day camp at Georgia Tech that exposes high school students to electrical and computer engineering. Activities range from touring research labs to building computers. The fee for this program is $175, and it is open to students entering their sophomore or junior years in high school.

Embry-Riddle Summer Camps

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University offers a variety of day and residential summer camps to students age 15-18 at its campuses in Daytona Beach, FL, and Prescott, AZ. These include computer, electrical, and software engineering programs as well as aerospace programs that emphasize either astronautical or aeronautical engineering. Costs vary by program.

Community College STEM Programs

Many local community colleges offer summer STEM or engineering programs for high school students. These programs may introduce attendees to different types of careers or provide hands-on learning opportunities. Some offer high school students a chance to take college-level engineering courses and earn college credit. Costs vary.

Summer Engineering Programs for Specific Groups

MINES at Montana Tech

Making Innovations in Engineering & Science (MINES) is a six-day residential program for girls who are rising 10th and 11th graders. Attendees learn about career opportunities within the STEM fields, meet female professionals, and engage in STEM-related educational activities. Tuition for this program is free, but attendees must pay residential fees for their meals and boarding accommodations.

MITES at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science (MITES) is a residential summer program designed for high school seniors representing minority or other under-served populations. During this free six-week program, attendees take core courses, such as calculus, humanities, biochemistry, and physics, along with electives that may include architecture or engineering design.

Student Eligibility for Summer Engineering Programs

Admission to many summer engineering programs is quite competitive. While each program has its own eligibility requirements, most require a student to demonstrate strong academic performance, especially in engineering-related courses, such as math, technology, and science. Some programs require applicants to have completed a pre-calculus course. To improve your chances of getting accepted to the summer program you choose, you'll want to focus on acing your high school STEM classes. For help, check out's self-paced online help and review courses, such as:

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