Columbia University High School Program

July 25, 2009
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Columbia HSP: Cockroaches and More Fun Stuff Like That

Before you ask, yes, there were cockroaches. Many cockroaches. However, the fact that these incidents paled in comparison to the rest of my Columbia experience is indicative of just how awesome the past three weeks have been.

I’ve been to other summer programs at Stanford and Brown before, but Columbia was still different in many ways. For one thing, the campus is located in New York City, which totally beats Palo Alto and Providence---the fact that there was so much great shopping and dining literally down the road made up for the terrible dorm food. There was also the fact that our dorms were organized into suites rather than individual rooms on floors, which set the stage for many great bonding experiences with my suitemates, including said cockroach incidents.

As for the actual academic component of this program (seems so insignificant, I know), I chose to do a course on “The US Economy and Globalization”, which sounded interesting to me as a future business major (yes, I am a nerd). However, the course was much more focused on political aspect of globalization rather than the economic or cultural side, which was what I’d really been anticipating. Nevertheless, it was still a pretty enjoyable course mainly due to my very interesting classmates. In fact, one of my favourite things about this program was its diversity: nearly half of the students in our class were international students, which made for some heated debates about global policymaking. The drama!

Overall, despite the cockroaches and terrible food and whatnot, Columbia HSP is a great idea for all aspiring nerds--you know you love it!--because it combines learning with actual Columbia professors (read: a recommendation letter at the end of it all) with a healthy dose of fun. Just be sure to pack some bug spray and cup noodles…you’re going to need it.

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This article has 5 comments. Post your own now!

LoreLai said...
May 4, 2014 at 10:01 pm
Great post! One question! Is it worth the money or should i go to harvard or cornell or brown? Thought i love love love nyc, thats the main reason I want to go! Is it worth it ?
AlexieG. said...
Apr. 29, 2014 at 11:02 am
How difficult is it to get accepted? How much free time do you have? Are the professors interesting? Do kids have parties?
Jesshado said...
Apr. 4, 2011 at 9:32 pm

Thanks for this! :D I've been debating going into the Creative Writing program there this summer. I kind of want to go to Coumbia once I graduate, so I figure it's just another stepping stone.

The only thing I'm worried about is that I'm a pretty shy person. How friendly would you say people were, on average?

CHSP replied...
Jun. 13, 2011 at 9:26 am
Yea, I have the same problem.......
margierose This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 28, 2011 at 6:36 pm
great review! I'm thinking of applying for next summer, how exclusive would you say the admissions are? 
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