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18 days ago
Admissions Advice

Summer programs
Answered

I am wondering how hard it is to get into decently competitive summer programs, especially in business and leadership (Ex: Berkeley Business Academy for Youth, Wharton summer programs, etc). Is it worth the money to apply and then not to get in? If you have been/know people that have had experiences at summer programs like those, is it worth it? Do you know of any other programs that are not super hard to get into, but will look good for colleges?

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Accepted Answer
18 days ago

If you have $6000-$10000 to spend on a summer program, it would be better to take 2 online college course with a Top 50 school that you can get college credit for.

Why? Because I will clearly show you can a.) do college level work, b.) you have intellectual curiosity outside of HS, c.) not afraid to challenge yourself with the most rigorous learning opportunities.

These "pay to play" programs not only signal to admissions officers that you come from a family of means $$$ but also are not very creative with your own free time and intellectual pursuits. I don't think they look that impressive in the end because the kid who starts a non-profit and collects, fixed and donates 100 laptops is going to get the brass ring before anyone attending these summer programs do.

If you are truly an intellectual prodigy, then you would be applying to the programs that meet 100% of financial need to and super hard to get into.

https://mitadmissions.org/apply/prepare/summer/

They might be 100% worth it and there are many people I know that enjoyed these programs. But keep in mind none of them are tied into the schools undergraduate admissions departments. They are not going to help you get into top Colleges. As you move down the rankings list to lesser schools, they might help you get in since those T50-T100 are looking for more students who can pay full tuition.

Good luck.

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