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Optional Summer Opportunities

Your first year at Northwestern is a unique time, and several optional programs are offered this summer and in the fall to help you make the most of it. Most programs have application deadlines at the end of May or in June, so act soon! Visit the program websites for the most up-to-date information.


Summer Academic Programs

These four summer academic programs are specifically designed to welcome first-generation and lower-income students to Northwestern and prepare them for success. Students who are the first in their family to attend college, who come from lower-income backgrounds, or who did not have access to AP/IB-level preparation in high school are encouraged to apply. The programs vary in length from three to five weeks, and each has a slightly different focus. Each program includes room and board and any materials necessary to participate.

Summer academic program information with deadlines and dates.
Program Dates Apply By
Open to new Weinberg College students, this five-week program offers preparation for the first-year science and premed curricula.
6/24–7/29 5/24
The five-week Bridge program gives incoming Weinberg and Medill students a chance to identify and hone the skills they’ll need to launch their Northwestern journey with confidence. Students take two core courses, Quantitative and Scientific Reasoning and Introduction to Critical Thinking, as well as an additional elective class introducing them to chemistry, economics, social science research methods, or journalism.
8/5–9/8 5/24
Hodge EXCEL Scholars Program
The Melville and Jane Hodge EXCEL Scholars program is an academic summer program for first-year students in the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern University. Participants are selected for their high school accomplishments, leadership skills, and demonstrated commitment to diversity issues.
6/24–7/29 5/23
Summer Academic Workshop
Students who complete the three-week SAW program strengthen their writing skills—earning credit for one (1) 100-level English writing course—and gain key insights and resources to successfully navigate Northwestern specifically as first-generation and/or lower-income students. Through SAW's partnership with the School of Communication, students will also participate in an experiential learning sequence that explores the capacity of storytelling to shape identities and establish meaningful relationships between people and places.
8/20–9/10 6/12

Fall Academic Program: SESP Leadership Institute (SLI)

Fall academic program information with deadlines and dates.
Program Dates Apply By
SLI: School of Education and Social Policy Leadership Institute
SLI is a 2-credit program that centers the experiences of first-generation and/or lower-income students. SLI encourages students to draw on their histories to inform their writings and academic pursuits and shape their communities at Northwestern and beyond.
Duration of fall quarter 9/1

A Note about Health and Safety

The safety of our students is our top priority. The dates and details above are subject to change as Northwestern follows local, state, and federal health directives and guidelines. Students will be notified of changes via Purple Prep emails throughout the summer.