Summer Research Programs for High School Students

Indigo Research Team

Indigo Research Team

June 2, 2023
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We know from experience that summer research programs are one of the best ways for high school students to boost their university applications: they can take an application from run-of-the-mill to a professional stand out. But where are you supposed to find the best high school research program for you? Where do you get started?

Let’s take a look:

Getting started: what is a research program?

A summer research program can range from working with Ph.D. scholars on new innovative science projects in a lab to studying the marine world on the high open seas. Summer research programs have been developed for all interest areas and can range from days to weeks or even the entire summer. A summer program can be full cultural immersion, improving the English language and learning about the history of a country, or a technical, lab-intensive experience. The options are endless.

To get a full list of prestigious research programs, check out the world's largest database of summer opportunities for free.

Let's start by looking at some amazing research-focused programs:

The Clark Scholar’s Program

This is a highly competitive, seven-week program for academically excellent junior and senior high school students hosted at Texas Tech University. You must be at least 17 years old to apply and it is also open to international students.

The Boston Leadership Institute STEM program for teens

This program offers one-week and three-week programs, all focused on helping students develop research skills in STEM, including a business entrepreneurship program. They also provide remote opportunities for learning and research.

Indigo Research Summer Intensive Program IRIS

The Indigo Research Intensive Summer (IRIS) Program is a six-week online program for high school students who are passionate about research. IRIS offers a unique opportunity for students to engage in hands-on research projects and collaborate with peers and mentors. This summer you can choose one of the five offered courses to learn from experienced professors and participate in workshops and seminars on research methodology, data analysis, and communication skills.

Elevate your summer!

Join an online 6-week Indigo Research intensive IRIS Program to complete an undergraduate-level research project under the guidance of top university profs from US & UK Universities.

Explore the program
Explore the program

What about free summer research programs?


One exciting and innovative program in the US for international girls is TechGirls. This is a four-week US-based program including an 8-month pre- and post-exchange mentoring program. In 2022, TechGirl supported 111 young women from 35 different countries, with all costs covered.

The Brilliant Club

The Brilliant Club is a UK-based scholarship program that gives students the opportunity to visit two world-class Universities and receive University-style tutoring in small group tutorials. The Brilliant Club enables students to get insight into studying at University and prepares you for the world of academia.

Interested in cultural immersion research programs?

International Summer School and Camp For Teenagers (ISSFT)

In this program, you can choose to study at the University of Stirling in Scotland or the University of Oxford in England, developing your academic, research, and social skills all at once!

Whatever you choose this summer, attending a summer research program will not only help you develop research skills, but also give you the opportunity to meet other students with the same passions and interests, learn about new cultures, and grow your global citizenship skills.

If you're looking for more options or year-round programs, don't forget to check out our recommended research opportunities for high school students.

Indigo Research Team
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