During the summer of 2015 there were three St. Paul’s Academy student standouts, Autumn E., Anastasia B. and Bassam B., who took initiative to participate in Pre-Collegiate Summer Institute high school programs. They collectively attended the following programs: Washington University in St. Louis and Stanford.

The Summer Institutes invite students from around the world to discover, study, and explore in small classes with instructors who are passionate about teaching and experts in their fields. The Pre-Collegiate Summer Institutes admissions process often mimics undergraduate admissions process and requires the submission of an online written application, standardized test scores, grades, and letters of recommendation(s).


These are some reflections from our high school students as they reflect back on what they have learned:


Capture“My time at Washington University in St. Louis was one that I will never forget. I took two college classes, Design Thinking and Biomedical Ethics, alongside real college students and got to experience both the toils and rewards of college life. Biomedical Ethics, a philosophy class, deeply intrigued me, especially during class discussions of topics ranging from euthanasia to clinical trials. In Design Thinking, we were taught how to solve problems from a designers point of view, and we were given a problem to address for a real client in small groups. In the program that I attended, other high school students and I were shown insights into the college application process and given advice on navigating college life. The campus was beautiful, and the weather was mostly nice for the time I was there. I loved the university, and it is now one of my top choices for college. “ ~ Autumn E. (11th Grade Student and has attended St. Paul’s since Lower School).


My time at Washington University in St. Louis was a blast. I learned a lot about the world of geopolitics and met a wide variety of people. The class I took was called Global Leadership and we had multiple lectures from people very much involved in world politics. We learned about Game Theory, the Prisoner’s Dilemma, and different types of rational thinking.  For our final project, we had to do a Pecha Kucha-style presentation on a topic and had to showcase a policy and how it would be implemented into the global political structure. Through this two-week program, other high school students and I learned how college kids live their lives and how they manage their time and activities. We spent the 4th of July weekend in St. Louis and it was fantastic. After Saint Louis, I went to Stanford University and had a blast there as well for three weeks. There I learned about Graphic Design and Computer Programming. For Graphic Design, we learned how to edit photos and use Photoshop and Illustrator to make business cards and 3-D models. In Computer Programming, we learned the basics on how computer programming works conceptually and did some programming through the making of games. I learned a lot at Stanford and had a completely different experience there than at Washington University, which was great. These courses really got me thinking about future colleges I could attend. ~ Bassam B (11th grade student who has attended St. Paul’s Academy since Lower School)


I spent the majority of my summer taking university level classes. First I went to Washington University in St. Louis. There I took a two-week class in communications and got to learn different forms of communications and different lines of work that are applicable to the communications field. We also got to explore the beautiful campus and we got to go to multiple different areas in the city of St. Louis itself. We spent our Fourth of July at the St. Louis Zoo where we got to see some awesome exhibits. For my final project I had to write an essay about a form of communications that we learned, an application of it, and a source of media that we would publish it on and why. I recently received notification that my final project was one of a few that was submitted and inserted in the Washington University in St. Louis literary journal. 


After my course at Washington University finished I went to Stanford, where I took a four-week class in introduction to legal studies. Through this program, I got to meet people from all over the world, and my class had some amazing opportunities. We got to have our mock trial, which was based off of a police brutality allegations case, in an actual courtroom, where an actual judge came up with a verdict for our case. We also had the chance to sit in on a preliminary hearing for a murder trial with the alleged murderers in the room. For the duration of my time at Stanford, I learned a lot. I learned about all different types of laws, how to write up legal memos, and how to be efficient in looking up and preparing for cases. I made a lot of really good friends; I explored the campus, and tried legal studies that I found to really love. Stanford was a place full of fun and activity, and it was an experience that I was lucky to have been accepted to and something that I am happy to have done.

~ Anastasia B. (11th grade student who has attended St. Paul’s Academy since Lower School)

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