Kaylee Seo Portola HS 11th Grade
Summer is supposedly a time for students to relax and spend time with friends and family by having pool parties, taking sunset photos, or to just eat popsicles to cool off from the heat. However, in Irvine, summer is a time for many rising juniors or seniors to apply and attend summer programs that are located in the east coast.
Summer programs allow students to have hands-on experiences in labs, research specifically about their topics in major, or preview a taste of the college life which includes living independently in dorms or eating food from cafeterias. The summer programs also help students to reach closure on the majors that they are going to pick and study for in the future.
David Lee, a rising senior at Beckman High School, came back recently from a summer program at Boston University that lasted for two weeks. The summer program David chose covered information in majors for business, media, and math and communication. However, “it was a very stressful experience,” David stated, because the program crammed months of work into two weeks. “I ended staying up till 2 a.m. every night to finish all of the homework, essays, and projects for the next class, ” David emphasized due to a large amount of independent studying that he had to do.
David was able to find his summer program online and advised any freshman or sophomore to “research for many different summer programs and apply for as many programs as possible so that you can have a lot of options to choose from.”
Leo Yu, a rising junior at Portola High School, is another student who is going to take a summer program at Drexel University in Philadelphia for material science in three days. The program will last for a week and he will attend classes everyday for five days. He is very excited to learn about material science in depth for his potential major of computer science. Plus, he is also curious to know what it feels like to have his “first experience away from his parents.”
On the other hand, many students are staying nearby in Irvine and taking classes here. For example, Grace Baek, an incoming freshman at Portola High School, is taking health in class everyday from 7:30 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. Although it is very hard for her to wake up earlier than normal school time and deal with quite a bit of homework and harsh teachers, she thinks that “the work and effort put into this class this summer will be well worth it and allow me to have more time to do other activities in the future.”
Eric Zhu is another freshmen who is going to attend Northwood High School and taking health class, however, his health class is blended. In this course, he will be doing all of the work online and coming to a testing place just once a week instead of attending class everyday. The reason Eric is taking this course over summer is because he “wanted get one of the required classes over with and be able to have some extra time to play games as well.”
In addition to the summer program, David Lee is also taking SAT class and SAT 2 math preparation at academies in order to supplement his areas of needs to improve his test scores. Summer is meant to be a break for students, however, it seems that it can actually be a quite stressful period of work and preparation in order to get into a college of the student’s choice. Students need to make sure to balance their life with studying and taking a break as well.
<Kaylee Seo Portola HS 11th Grade