Summer Programs = Explore
The concept of summer school is fantastic as it allows the kid to explore and learn. It is more like a seminal enriching experience of life. In our opinion a student should strive to go to a ‘different university setting’ and explore.
Usually, children pick up top universities in the US and general are very impressed by the sheer aura and grandiosity of those universities. However, fundamentally the student should explore areas which are not possible in his/ her home setting.
Summer Programs are best done in Formative Years
The key point that we want to make is that one should go for a summer program in his/ her formative years. We define formative years as Grade 9 (if you are hoping to pursue your undergraduate from that or other similar universities) and Second year of under graduation. (If you are hoping to pursue your Masters from that or other similar universities)
Summer Programs are Most Effective when done in Grade IX
Going for summer program post Grade 10 does not make sense as you have already chosen your subjects and you are gearing towards taking exams like SAT or JEE. Any distraction at this point is meaningless and most likely would take away time and effort from your existing preparation. Also, it is going to be expensive – at least a few thousand dollars – and to spend that money in additional exploration is pointless when you have already decided on a course of action. It is a myth that summer programsincrease the chances of getting admission in that university. Therefore, sending a kid into a summer program in grade XI or XII is meaningless. Remember, the purpose of summer programs is to explore!
Summer Programs have a huge impact when done Second Year of College
The other time to go for summer programs is during the 2nd year of under graduation. During this time you can explore nuances of multiple disciplines within or outside the major subjects that you have chosen.Also by second year, you have developed some understanding of your major and therefore are in a great mental state to explore variants and experiment with possibilities. First year is too early and final year too late! Sometimes, students can develop relationships with professors which might help during their subsequent studies.
What to do during a Summer Program
One should go to a summer program with an open mind and with an intent to explore. You should ideally do things which you have not had a chance to see/ explore at your home base. You should dabble in experiences which are novel and get you out of your comfort zone. And more importantly, go with the intent of having fun – no point in being all serious about it and missing out on the amazing experience of visiting a new place and experiencing new people and culture.
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