Summer programs extend outreach, learning on Princeton campus

June 27, 2016 noon

Students of all ages from across the country and world will be engaged in a summer of learning on the Princeton University campus, taking part in programs on subjects ranging from chemistry and combustion energy to music and entrepreneurship.

Princeton students, faculty and staff, as well as leaders from other organizations, will oversee programs designed to help elementary, secondary, college and graduate students build their academic and leadership skills. The programs are part of a busy summer on campus. Princeton's Department of Athletics sponsors dozens of sports camps; Campus Recreation runs an annual summer day camp; and Conference and Events Services works with numerous outside organizations that use campus facilities for conferences and other activities.

The following list offers a look at some of the educational and leadership programs taking place this summer. Deadlines for registering for this year's programs have passed, but anyone interested in participating in future programs should consult the contacts listed below. 

Astrophysical Sciences

Undergraduate Summer Research Program, June 7-Aug. 5
Contact: Jenny Greene, 609-258-6301,; Michael Strauss, 609-258-3808,

Undergraduates selected for this paid nine-week internship program carry out research projects under the supervision of faculty and postdoctoral advisers. Students participate in projects with a range of levels of difficulty and sophistication; some even co-author research articles for peer-reviewed journals based on their summer research. Undergraduate researchers study topics in experimental, observational and theoretical astronomy. Participating in the summer program is an excellent introduction to research astronomy, and for students interested in majoring in astrophysics, it is a great way to learn whether astrophysics is something they would like to pursue as a career. Many former participants have gone on to graduate school and to careers in astronomy and other sciences.

Summer Programs on campus tigers behind Nassau Hall

The Princeton University campus is home to summer programs for students of all ages from across the country and the world. Princeton students, faculty and staff oversee programs designed to help elementary, secondary, college and graduate students build their academic and leadership skills. (Photo by Nick Barberio, Office of Communications)

At the Well Young Women's Leadership Academy

Summer Leadership Camp, July 24-Aug. 5
Contact: Jacqueline Glass, 646-592-1488,

At the Well Young Women's Leadership Academy is geared toward building leadership, critical thinking and problem-solving skills for minority girls entering the 10th-12th grades. The academy offers dynamic speakers, standardized test-taking strategies, critical reading and essay writing classes, group activities, and field trips. Speakers may include business leaders, entrepreneurs and Princeton faculty and staff.

The academy provides on-campus housing, which allows the students to learn, study and commune together while experiencing college life firsthand. The academy will host more than 50 students from across the country.


Summer Undergraduate Research Program for Diversity in Chemistry, June 6-Aug. 5
Contact: Susan VanderKam, 609-258-1727,

This selective program provides unique laboratory experiences for qualified, non-Princeton undergraduates, placing each student into research groups directed by Princeton faculty. For nine weeks the undergraduate summer researcher becomes part of the lab group, working side-by-side with postdoctoral fellows, graduate students and other undergraduates. Each student has the opportunity to play a part in cutting-edge research and be a contributing member of the research team.

In addition to the valuable laboratory experience, each student participates in research discussion groups and safety training, and has the opportunity to participate in field trips, including an industrial chemistry laboratory tour, and a research poster session.

Undergraduate Summer Research in Molecular Biophysics, June 6-Aug. 5
Contact: Kuri Chacko, 609-258-3924,

Now in its 12th year, this program offers interdisciplinary research experience in leading laboratories to students majoring in the physical or mathematical sciences or engineering at colleges with limited research opportunities. The program is open only to non-Princeton students. Each student serves as a research assistant in the laboratory of a Princeton faculty member who serves as a mentor and research adviser. The program directors, in consultation with training faculty, match student interests to available projects. Regular meetings with the faculty mentor and members of the laboratory team provide guidance for experimental design, methods and progress. By the end of the program, students prepare a formal written report on their research and present an oral summary. Successful completion of the Princeton summer research program qualifies students for a second research summer overseas with collaborators in the Czech Republic.

Combustion Energy Frontier Research Center

Princeton-CEFRC-CI Summer School on Combustion, June 19-24
Contact: Chung Law, 609-258-5271,

Nearly 225 graduate students and researchers representing 29 states and 14 countries from 90 academic institutions, as well as national and international laboratories and corporations, attended a week of lectures designed to provide the next generation of combustion researchers with a comprehensive knowledge in the technical areas of combustion theory, experimentation, computation and applications. The annual summer school, now in its seventh year, is becoming increasingly in demand, reflecting the role of combustion knowledge in solving the twin challenges of energy sufficiency and climate change. This program is organized by the Combustion Energy Frontier Research Center at Princeton, and has been sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy in past sessions. Recognizing the global impact of the program, the international Combustion Institute joined the sponsorship this year.

Computer Science

Program in Algorithmic and Combinatorial Thinking, June 20-July 29
Contact: Rajiv Ghandi,

About 70 high school students, most from New Jersey, and nine undergraduate students will participate in this program aimed at introducing them to advanced topics in theoretical computer science. The program is hosted by Princeton's Department of Computer Science and is partly supported by the National Science Foundation's grant to Rutgers University-Camden.

Cooperative Institute for Climate Science

Cooperative Institute for Climate Science Research Internship Program, June 6-Aug. 19
Contact: Laura Rossi, 609-258-6376,

The Cooperative Institute for Climate Science (CICS) fosters research collaborations between Princeton University and NOAA's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL). Its work is carried out through a partnership between the University's Program in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences and GFDL. This summer, CICS will host interns to work with scientists at the University and GFDL. The interns are undergraduate and graduate students from outside Princeton. The interns will spend 8-10 weeks participating in research internships in atmospheric, oceanic and earth system science.

Graduate School

Princeton Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (PSURE), June 12-Aug. 6
Contacts: Renita Miller, 609-258-7193,; Julie Yun, 609-258-1328,; Venus Israni, 609-258-9637,

This program is designed for undergraduate students (mostly juniors and seniors) with a serious interest in pursuing a Ph.D., with plans to pursue a career in teaching and research. It is intended to prepare students to be competitive applicants to research-based doctoral programs. Students may work in any of Princeton's academic departments or programs. Historically underrepresented undergraduates from public institutions who have exhibited tremendous academic promise are especially encouraged to apply. Participating students conduct independent research working closely with faculty mentors, attend an intensive Graduate Record Examination preparation course and a research methods seminar, complete workshops on applying to competitive graduate school programs, and have access to engage top administrators and faculty to gain insight on the inner workings of a college and/or university setting. In addition, students receive training on preparing academic oral presentations and complete a final paper, which serves as a writing sample for the graduate school application process.

Each PSURE student receives a stipend and travel allowance, and has an opportunity to present their research at the Leadership Alliance National Symposium from July 29-31 in Stamford, Connecticut.

Summer Programs Keller Center's eLab Summer Accelerator Program

The Keller Center's eLab Summer Accelerator Program is a launch pad for Princeton student startups. This summer, eight teams of students will participate in the program based at the University's Entrepreneurial Hub in downtown Princeton. (Photo by Denise Applewhite, Office of Communications)

Keller Center

International Research Exchange Program (REACH), June-July
Contact: Lilian Tsang, 609-258-5041,

The Keller Center has arranged for six undergraduate students from Hong Kong, one undergraduate and two graduate students from Germany, and one undergraduate student from Taiwan to work in Princeton research laboratories this summer. As part of the exchange program, Princeton students will conduct research abroad, with six students at German universities, six students at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and one student at the National Chiao-Tung University in Taiwan.

The REACH program aims to expose engineering students to international approaches to technology, research and leadership, while giving them hands-on research experience in their field of study. It is a partnership between Princeton, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute, the National Chiao-Tung University in Taiwan, and University Alliance Ruhr, a consortium of three universities in Germany's Ruhr region.

eLab Summer Accelerator Program, June 6-Aug. 12
Contact: Stephanie Landers, 609-258-3979,

The Keller Center's eLab Summer Accelerator Program is a launch pad for student startups, a creative co-working space open by application only to some of Princeton's student entrepreneurs. Students will spend 10 weeks learning from innovators and investors how to fine-tune their nascent startup ideas to develop them into viable and scalable ventures. At the end of the program, the students will participate in two Demo Days — one in Princeton and one in New York City — when they will share their plans with investors, inventors, experts and others from the entrepreneurial community. There are eight teams in the eLab Summer Accelerator Program this summer. The program is based in the University's Entrepreneurial Hub at 34 Chambers St. in downtown Princeton.

Princeton Startup Immersion Program, May 23-Aug. 12 
Contact: Lilian Tsang, 609-258-5041,

The Princeton Start-Up Immersion Program (PSIP) is the Keller Center's newest internship program for students interested in an immersive entrepreneurial and enrichment opportunity. The pilot 10-week program kicked off on May 23 with 30 students interning at 19 distinct startups in New York City. The students gain first-hand experience working at an early stage startup company working alongside key decision makers; live together as a cohort in a Princeton-sponsored residential program (this year at the Princeton Club of New York); receive mentorship from tested entrepreneurs; participate in educational and fun enrichment opportunities; and build lifelong relationships with PSIP peers and startup hosts. PSIP is open to all undergraduate and graduate students from all academic majors.

Tiger Challenge, June 6-Aug. 12
Contact: Rafe Steinhauer, 609-258-3347,

A total of 20 students broken into five teams will begin tackling complex and important challenges this summer using design thinking. The teams will help examine and address affordable housing in Princeton; reimagine the long spine board used to support injured patients; make electronic mathematical communication easier; help design continual reflection into students' lives to foster personal growth and mitigate stress; and help create an information technology innovation ecosystem at the University.

Leadership Enterprise for a Diverse America (LEDA)

LEDA Summer Institute, June 18-Aug. 6
Contact: Beth Breger, 646-641-3568,

Since 2005, Leadership Enterprise for a Diverse America (LEDA) has hosted their annual Summer Institute on Princeton's campus. Over seven weeks, 100 high-achieving, low-income high school juniors from across the country are empowered to gain admission to and succeed at the country's most selective colleges. By helping qualified students from low-income backgrounds access these institutions, LEDA seeks to ensure that this nation's leaders are truly reflective of its citizenry. While at Princeton, LEDA scholars receive leadership training, writing instruction, standardized test preparation, one-on-one college counseling and more. In college and beyond, LEDA scholars receive ongoing community-building, academic advising, career counseling and postgraduate planning to support their continued success.

Mid-Infrared Technologies for Health and the Environment (MIRTHE)

Summer Research Opportunities, June-August
Contact: Roxanne Zellin, 609-258-7922,

MIRTHE, the Mid-Infrared Technologies for Health and the Environment Center, will host 17 undergraduate students at Princeton and its partner institutions for eight weeks of research and education. The students will participate in original, hands-on research projects and attend short courses and lectures that explore the challenges of hardware, software and systems engineering of trace chemical sensors. The center's research could yield important new technology related to health, security and the environment. Students also visit nearby government and industrial labs. The undergraduate students hail from 17 colleges and universities across the nation, including Princeton. In addition to the college students, six high school students (rising seniors age 16 and older) and three high school teachers will work in MIRTHE labs at Princeton and other universities. Seventeen international students and 11 Princeton students, who are funded by other programs, will also participate in MIRTHE programs at Princeton. The other participating MIRTHE institutions are Rice University, Texas A&M, City College of New York and the University of Maryland-Baltimore County. The students at the sites in Maryland and New York will come to Princeton for the last two days of the program for a research presentation workshop.

Molecular Biology

Summer Undergraduate Research Program, June 6-Aug. 5
Contacts: Melissa DiMeglio, 609-258-9455,; Vanessa Gonzalez-Perez, 609-258-9623,

Each summer, the Department of Molecular Biology, the Lewis-Sigler Institute for Integrative Genomics and the Genentech Foundation provide intensive laboratory research experiences to a select group of undergraduates chosen from a nationwide pool. Each student joins a world-class research group headed by a Princeton faculty member and carries out an original research project. Participants are immersed in a culture of close collaboration with other undergraduates, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and faculty, and thereby experience firsthand what it is like to be a scientist. More than 77 percent of former participants have since pursued degrees in Ph.D., M.D. or combined M.D./Ph.D. programs.


Sō Percussion Summer Institute, July 10-24
Contact: Yumi Tamashiro, 646-926-2330,

The Sō Percussion Summer Institute is an intensive two-week chamber music seminar for college-age percussionists and composers. The four members of Sō Percussion, who are the Edward T. Cone Performers-in-Residence at Princeton, serve as faculty in rehearsal, performance and discussion of contemporary music. This year's focus is on some of the biggest commissions from the last 15 years: David Lang's "the so-called laws of nature"; Paul Lansky's "Threads"; Steven Mackey's "It Is Time"; Dan Trueman's "neither Anvil nor Pulley"; and Bryce Dessner's "Music for Wood and Strings." Participants will have the opportunity to take part in master classes, composition lessons and coaching with renowned composers and performers; performances in and around Princeton; and readings by Sō Percussion of student composers' pieces.

Golandsky Institute Summer Symposium and International Piano Festival, July 10-16
Contact: Adrienne Sirken, 609-306-1237,

This symposium for pianists, teachers and musicians of all ages features lectures, master classes, technique clinics, private lessons, supervised practice time and other presentations related to the Taubman Approach, as well as an international piano festival featuring performances by renowned pianists, open to the public. Six recitals in Taplin Auditorium will take place as part of the piano festival. Scott Burnham, the Scheide Professor of Music History, will give a lecture, "Schubert's Last Years," at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 13, in McCormick Hall, Room 101. The lecture and recitals are open to the public.

Office of the Dean for Research

Laboratory Learning Program, June-August
Contact: Lynne Brown, 609-258-6012,

The Laboratory Learning Program is a supervised educational program that allows a limited number of high school students, with the support of their schools, to conduct research in Princeton science and engineering laboratories. These educational research opportunities are normally limited to students 16 years of age and older who have not yet graduated from high school. This selective program is designed to offer students an opportunity to participate actively in state-of-the-art research projects, under the mentorship and supervision of a Princeton faculty member. Students selected for the program will be integrated into the daily research experience of the laboratory, participating in meetings, seminars, research discussions and other appropriate educational activities.

Research opportunities for high school students normally take place over a summer, though the faculty mentor will define exact terms.

Office of the Vice Provost for International Affairs and Operations

International Student Internship Program, mid-June-mid-August
Contact: Claire Hu, 609-258-7232,

The University will host 13 international undergraduate students on campus this summer for the first year of the International Student Internship Program (ISIP). ISIP provides opportunities for promising young scholars from institutions abroad to work with Princeton faculty and to experience the unique research and scholarly environment of the Princeton campus. The program allows Princeton to broaden outreach to young scholars in other parts of the world, to facilitate the flow of people and ideas to Princeton's campus, to cultivate new academic contacts, and to offer reciprocity with institutions abroad that regularly host Princeton students. The program is sponsored by the Office of the Vice Provost for International Affairs and Operations, in collaboration with the Office of the Dean for Research and the Office of the Dean of the College's Office of Undergraduate Research.

Pace Center for Civic Engagement

Community House STEAM Summer Camp
Beginner session: June 21-July 8; advanced session: July 18-Aug. 5

Contact: Charlotte Collins, 609-258-0164,

The Community House STEAM Summer Camp, hosted by the Pace Center for Civic Engagement, offers underrepresented middle school students from the Princeton area a fun foray into science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM). Organized and run by a team of Princeton student camp associates, the camp focuses on making learning the STEAM subjects enjoyable and educational. With a curriculum developed by Princeton graduate students (as well as alumni in the field and some undergraduates), each week of the camp will weave together science in the arts with exploration of engineering and media arts, biology and performing arts, technology applications and visual arts, and environmental science and creative writing. STEAM summer campers will also take field trips related to the week's arts and science themes. This summer, two sessions will be held for beginner and advanced STEAM camp students. Please note camp registration for 2016 is closed.

Princeton University Summer Journalism Program, Aug. 5-15
Contacts: Mim Ra Aslaoui,; Caroline Lippman,

Now in its 15th year, the Summer Journalism Program will host 38 high school students from low-income backgrounds for an intensive, all-expenses-paid, 10-day seminar on journalism and college admissions. The program's goal is to use journalism as a means to introduce outstanding low-income high school students to the world of college-level liberal arts education — and to encourage those students to attend selective colleges and eventually pursue careers in journalism or other intellectual fields.

The program's founder and executive director is former New Republic and National Journal Magazine editor Richard Just, a Princeton Class of 2001 graduate; other directors include a number of professional journalists, Princeton alumni and students who attended the program in past summers. Two interns through Princeton Internships in Civic Service help to organize and run the program each year.

Princeton Center for Complex Materials (PCCM)

Contact: Dan Steinberg, 609-258-5598,

Research Experience for Undergraduates, June 6-Aug. 5

Eleven college students from around the country will conduct research in the labs of Princeton faculty members. These students will be based in engineering, physics and chemistry departments, working on cutting-edge problems in materials science. Their work will be funded primarily by the National Science Foundation (NSF) through major projects, including the PCCM and NSF's Partnership for Research and Education in Materials at California State University-Northridge.

Princeton University Materials Academy, July 5-22

Sixteen high school students from Trenton, New Jersey, will be on campus to interact with Princeton faculty and students and learn about materials science and sustainability in Princeton University labs and classrooms. The students will work on batteries, materials science and energy storage solutions.

Partners in Science, June-August

In collaboration with the Jersey City-based Liberty Science Center, faculty members and graduate students in the Princeton Institute for the Science and Technology of Materials will serve as mentors to high school students working as researchers in their labs. The program will culminate in a symposium during which the students will present their work.

Summer School for Condensed Matter Physics, Aug. 8-11

More than 200 participants, mostly graduate students, from around the world will come to Princeton to attend lectures and workshops in physics and materials science led by prominent researchers from Princeton, the University of Pennsylvania, the Institute for Advanced Study and other institutions. The broad themes of this year's summer school are "many-body localization" and "frustrated magnetism." The program is organized by Princeton graduate students and sponsored by the PCCM and the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science.

Princeton Plasma Physics Lab (PPPL)

Research Experience for Undergraduates, June-August
Contact: Jeanne Jackson DeVoe, 609-243-2757,

Undergraduate students from across the country in the Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship Program, along with students in the Community College Internship Program, will spend 10 weeks working with PPPL scientists on current research projects. The students will take a weeklong introductory course in plasma physics and will work with PPPL scientists who serve as mentors for their research projects. The students will then present their projects in a poster session at the end of the internship.

Princeton University Art Museum

Summer Internship Program, June 6-Aug. 5
Contact: Veronica White,

The Princeton University Art Museum offers a nine-week summer internship program for undergraduate and graduate students from any accredited four-year university or college program. Interns have the opportunity to work in one of the following departments: curatorial, education, development, information technology, marketing, office of the registrar, publications or retail operations. Not all departments take interns each summer, and interns are placed on the basis of their experience, academic training and departmental need. In addition to their departmental responsibilities, interns participate in a three-day orientation program during their first week and weekly lunch discussions with museum staff. Field trips to other arts-related organizations are also arranged.

Program in Teacher Preparation

Princeton University Preparatory Program (PUPP), June 18-Aug. 5
Contact: Jason Klugman, 609-258-3337,

This intensive, three-year college preparation program supports a select group of academically gifted high school students from low-income families who attend partner schools in Mercer County, New Jersey. The goal of PUPP is to prepare students to be viable candidates for admission to and success at selective colleges and universities. Students take courses in art, writing, literature, math, physics, biology, social science and college-preparation skills, while also attending a leadership retreat at the Princeton-Blairstown Center, going on college tours and taking cultural excursions.

QUEST Summer Institute, July 11-15
Contact: Anne Catena, 609-258-2537,

Princeton's Program in Teacher Preparation will offer a summer institute in science and mathematics for teachers of grades 3-12. QUEST is designed to enhance teachers' content knowledge and their skills through hands-on experiments and discussion. QUEST will focus on "disciplinary core ideas" as well as "science and engineering practices of the next-generation science standards" to support teachers' implementations. Teachers of grades 3-8 may attend a session on "weather and climate," while middle and high school teachers are invited to attend a session on "life in extreme environments."

W.E.B. DuBois Scholars Institute

W.E.B. DuBois Scholars Institute, June 25-July 30
Contact: 973-720-3394,

The W.E.B. DuBois Scholars Institute is held on the Princeton campus each summer and provides scholarship and leadership training for high-achieving youth entering grades 10 and 11. Participants receive five weeks of instruction in university-level courses selected from the natural and computer sciences as well as the social sciences and humanities. The courses emphasize time management, collaborative learning and problem solving. The training empowers participants with skills and confidence to function as "change agents" in their schools, neighborhoods and communities, as well as to build the skills needed to succeed in school and work.

Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

Junior Summer Institute, June 8-July 29
Contact: Gilbert Collins, 609-258-4809,

Thirty-two students, representing 28 colleges and universities in the United States, will participate in the 2016 Junior Summer Institute. Students come from 15 states and represent 24 majors. The program helps prepare students for graduate study and careers in public policy and international affairs by providing participants with the tools of critical thinking, speaking, writing, quantitative reasoning, and the skills and experiences necessary to create, analyze, implement, evaluate and affect policy in a multicultural, multiethnic society. Coursework includes seven weeks of policy-related classroom instruction, including a policy workshop on either a domestic or international policy issue. As part of the program's culmination, students will present a comprehensive final report on a current policy issue that will encompass the skills and knowledge they have gained. The institute is one of four held at U.S. universities through the Public Policy and International Affairs Fellowship Program, a national consortium of top graduate public policy and international affairs schools that prepare college students for advanced degrees and careers serving the public good.

Santa Fe Indian School Leadership Institute's Summer Policy Academy, June 11-17
Contact: Melissa Lee, (609) 258-5669,

This program provides high school Native Americans the opportunity to explore challenges and issues facing Native Americans and to examine how federal policies have an impact on tribal communities. Students are nominated to participate in the program by teachers, community leaders, professionals and tribal leaders. This year's participants came from 16 Pueblo Nations in New Mexico and the Navajo Nation in Arizona. 

Through roundtable discussions, case studies and presentations by Native American leaders and noted scholars, students examine policymaking on the state and federal levels and the current political climate. This year's program explored the epidemic of Native American youth suicide as part of the manifestation of generational trauma. Participants also examined the recently enacted Every Student Succeeds Act, as well as the issue of law enforcement in schools.

The week culminated in Washington, D.C., where students presented their findings and policy recommendations to the National Congress of American Indians, the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, White House Native American Domestic Policy Advisers, the World Bank and the directors of programs for indigenous peoples in Central and South America, and to the members of the New Mexico congressional delegation.