Top Coding and Computer Science Summer Programs

Farah Weheba
Farah Weheba

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If you’re interested in coding, enrolling in a summer program is a great idea. For instance, you can launch your academic and career readiness in computer science (aka CS). Uniquely to computer science, any independent or project-based coding work you engage at any age counts. So, you can start now towards your professional development and hiring prospects! Consequently, below is a list of coding summer programs for aspiring programmers. Don’t worry, because Empowerly is here to help you plan your summer.

What do I need to know?

Initially, all programs require applicants to have a strong background and passion for science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). However, options vary across summer programs in how much prior programming knowledge is required. 

In addition to offering students a range of immersive and rigorous learning experiences, all of the below opportunities are highly selective. Not only that, they are hosted by nationally-recognized universities, nonprofits, and government institutions. If possible, attending such programs provides students with better academic preparation and personal enrichment. It also demonstrates commitment to computer science (CS); and the ability to handle significant responsibility and challenges. 

How does this help me?

Above all, students sometimes wonder exactly how a program will benefit them. Firstly, the ability to expand your resume is important. In fact, being able to demonstrate initiative in your extracurriculars is a big boost. Secondly, you’ll begin to amass a concrete portfolio of work. Having examples of your ideas adds credibility, also. Not only that, you’ll be able to build the soft skills of working in professional settings (see above). In conclusion, all of these learning opportunities will set you ahead of the rest of your class.

For instance, we will first share a few noteworthy programs. Following, we share a list of Coding Summer Programs categorized by state. 

Noteworthy Programs

In this section, you can review some of the foremost options out there. To explain, we included descriptions and resources to learn more. After that, we name a few more options out there.

BlueStamp Engineering

BlueStamp is a coding and computer science summer program available in San Francisco, Palo Alto, and New York. Surprisingly, students choose all of their projects to work on. This 6-week summer program starts in June.

Additionally, students may also apply to a 2-week prerequisite program. This program, specifically, engages a 3-to-1 student to staff ratio and entrepreneurship guest lecturers. Students also the opportunity to build working programming prototypes.

For both programs, students document retain ownership over their creations. This also means that students can use their original working programs however you like! Some want to enter them into academic competitions or evolve them at their leisure. Finally, participating in BlueStamp gives a glimpse of a day in the life of many types of software engineers. 

Penn Engineering Summer Academy

PESA offers coursework in computer science, robotics, nanotechnology, and networks. In summary, this program runs for three weeks in July, and tuition is $7375 with financial aid available. 

MIT Women’s Technology Program (WTP)

WTP is open to female rising high school seniors. To clarify, it is a 4-week summer program. During the program, students explore engineering through classes, labs, and projects. For example, focuses offered include Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, or Mechanical Engineering.

Truly, WTP is a great opportunity. However admission to WTP is quite competitive, with a tuition price of $3,500. Nonetheless, students demonstrating certain financial need can attend for free.  

MIT Beaver Works Summer Institute

BWSI is a 4-week residential program for rising high school seniors. Primarily, students learn to navigate a race-car. Further, the program wraps up in a Race Day to test prototypes. However, earning qualification requires a teacher nomination, and an online application. Still, great news: this program is free.

Google Computer Science Institute

Google’s version is a 3-week intro to coding for high school seniors. Because of this goal, the program aims to train emerging tech leaders and innovators. Not only that, it is held in multiple states each summer, with an inside look into Google operations.

Also, participation in this coding and computer science program is free. 

AI Scholars 2020 

AI Scholars is a pre-college enrichment program. In fact, AI Scholars was developed and taught exclusively by Stanford PhD students. As a result, the program focuses on experiential learning. Beyond that, the program guides students to work on a mentor-led, socially impactful AI projectin their field of interest.

Initially, their 2-week summer program will be conducted in Palo Alto in June. It is also available for grades 9-12 in San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, New York. Finally, find them at international locations (including India and Dubai)!

In this addendum section, similarly, we have additional recommendations. However, these are more highly specialized. But we also believe they are worth an honorable mention for how they stand out.

These following provide an intro for high-performing female students, less familiar with CS:
  • Girls Who Code 
  • MIT Women’s Technology Program
On the other end of the spectrum:
And, these two programs provide a stipend for participants:
  • NASA internships
  • The Science & Engineering Apprenticeship Program

A Coding and Computer Science Summer Program List by State

While this list is not intended to be completely comprehensive, it is useful to have a starting point. So browse to see what options are popular near you!

Finally, if you have more questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. In fact, Empowerly has a whole research team that excels in this area. Basically, you can send in a question and receive expert advice and further reading, like this! Overall, we’re here to help.

New Jersey
New York
Washington, DC
Washington State
Multiple States

In conclusion, applying to summer programs is similar to applying to colleges. Similarly, try to apply for reach, target, and safety programs. For tips about engaging self-directed summer research activities instead of summer program attendance, see this article.  

Likewise, many of our students have been successfully admitted to most of these summer programs. Talk to one of our enrollment experts to find out how!

Questions? Let us know!